AMC to flee Dish Network?

AMC’s increasingly bitter carriage fee dispute with EchoStar’s Dish Network may lead to the broadcaster not showing its channels in the future.

Giving credence to the argument were comments made by Dish’s boss Charlie Ergen saying that most Dish subscribers hadn’t noticed that AMC’s  channels hadn’t been available.

AMC’s channels, which include Sundance, AMC itself and IFC, went dark on July 1st.  Not being on Dish Network has trimmed AMC’s distribution by 13 per cent, with a commensurate affect on future revenues.

A trial is due to start on September 18th in New York between EchoStar/Dish and AMC’s parent company.

Meantime, AMC Networks reported higher earnings in the second quarter, but warned its dispute with Dish Network could hurt profits in the future. Net income rose 53 per cent to $41.5 million from $27.1 million a year ago.

Revenues rose 12 per cent to $328 million.

“The termination of Dish Network’s carriage will have a material impact on our revenues, AOCF and operating income in future periods,” the company said. “Although Dish Network’s termination has reduced the company’s total subscribers by approximately 13 per cent, the impact on our AOCF and operating income, if it continues, will be material higher.

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