Dish Network and Hearst Television are in the final hours of a retransmission battle that could black out 29 local Hearst TV stations in as many markets.
In a move that directly reflects Comcast's $45 billion acquisition bid for Time Warner Cable, Dish Network Chairman Charlie Ergen has reportedly reached out to DirecTV CEO Mike White about merging the two satellite services.
Updated: Following a business model that eschews subscription fees and encourages "celebs and organizations" to sell ad space and their own products directly on a mobile screen, Private Label Mobile TV "hopes to further loosen the stranglehold of cable television providers."
DirecTV Chairman-CEO Michael White took home about 30 percent less money in 2013 compared to 2012, according to a company proxy statement that listed White's total compensation in 2013 as $12.5 million, compared to $18 million in 2012.
Seven months after Jim Dolan's Madison Square Garden Co. announced that it would build an entertainment complex in Las Vegas, DirecTV said that it is looking at venues for a new form of boxing programming debuting this summer that it described as "an aggressive new sport" which will "encourage aggressive punching and reward offensive fighters."
Comcast's $45.2 billion agreement to acquire Time Warner Cable could make the idea of a potential DirecTV merger with Dish Network more attractive to regulators, DirecTV CEO Mike White suggested at an investor conference Tuesday.
Local TV stations would be prohibited from teaming up to negotiate retransmission-consent agreements with pay-TV distributors, under a proposal FCC chairman Tom Wheeler announced Thursday.
DirecTV is following the lead of competitor Dish Network and is in discussions with Walt Disney Co. to deliver Disney content such as ESPN, the Disney Channel and ABC to customers via an over-the-top Internet-based product.
Top executives at Dish Network and DirecTV used their fourth-quarter earnings calls to react to Comcast's merger proposal with Time Warner Cable, expressing concerns about the number of pay-TV subscribers and programming assets that Comcast and TWC would control.
Dish Network added 8,000 net video subscribers in the fourth quarter, with growth slowing compared to the 14,000 it picked up in Q4 2012 and the 22,000 net video subs it posted in the same period in 2011.