August 3, 2018 / 10:44 AM / in 3 months

UPDATE 3-Dish results beat estimates, shares rise

(Adds share price, analyst comments)

By Sheila Dang and Akanksha Rana

Aug 3 (Reuters) - U.S. satellite TV provider Dish Network Corp reported better-than-expected quarterly profit and revenue on Friday, as the company lost fewer subscribers than expected.

Dish shed a net 192,000 satellite customers during the second quarter, below analyst expectations for losses of 235,000 customers, according to research firm FactSet.

Shares of Dish rose 10.5 percent to $33.00 in morning trading.

Jonathan Chaplin, an analyst with New Street Research, said in a note that Dish's pay-TV business is showing signs of stabilization, "and this should give investors comfort that the runway on this business is perhaps a bit longer than expected."

Dish has struggled to stop losses from cord-cutting as TV viewers increasingly move to online video streaming services.

It has tried to lure younger viewers to its $25-per-month streaming service Sling TV, but analysts have said Sling has not replaced lost profits in Dish's satellite business.

Dish has also been acquiring a stockpile of wireless spectrum, or airwaves that carry data. The company is under pressure to build a network using the spectrum before the licenses expire.

Craig Moffett, an analyst with MoffettNathanson, said in a note that the quarterly results have become a "sideshow" on its earnings conference calls, as analysts look for Dish to explain how it plans to build a network.

Sling TV added 41,000 subscribers during the quarter, reaching a total of 2.34 million customers.

Dish's churn rate, or the percentage of subscribers who cancel a service, fell to 1.46 percent, compared with 1.83 percent last year.

Revenue fell 5 percent to $3.46 billion.

Net income attributable to the company rose to $439 million, or 83 cents per share, in the second quarter ended June 30 from $40 million, or 9 cents per share, a year earlier.

Analysts on average had expected earnings of 71 cents per share and revenue of $3.44 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. (Reporting by Akanksha Rana in Bengaluru and Sheila Dang in New York; Editing by Anil D'Silva and Jonathan Oatis)

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