), one of the largest U.S. satellite TV operators, signed a
multi-year deal with WeatherNation to broadcast weather forecasts
and related events. The agreement came in after DIRECTV had
stopped broadcasting The Weather Channel in Jan 2014 due to
programming fee settlement conflicts. Following this development,
DIRECTV shares declined 0.8%.
However, DIRECTV has recently initiated talks with The Weather
Channel to resolve the programming fee dispute. The Weather
Channel is jointly controlled by NBC universal, which is part of
), and two private equity firms, namely,
Blackstone Group LP
) and Bain Capital Partners LLC.In 2011,
DISH Network Corp.
) also stopped transmitting the channel due to a programming fee
According to industry researcher SNL Kagan, in 2012 and 2013,
The Weather Channel received an average fee of 13 cents a month
per subscriber. The content provider now seeks a fee hike of a
penny, a month per subscriber. According to rating firm Nielsen,
The Weather Channel has lost more than 19% of its audience since
One of the reasons behind The Weather Channel's declining
viewership is the growing popularity of its own smartphone and
tablet applications with a substantial rise in demand for the
Notably, DIRECTV's recent accord with the WeatherNation will
provide weather-related information and radar imagery to the
former's 20 million subscribers.
DIRECTV currently has a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). Elimination of
low-quality customers, launch of TV Everywhere and online video
streaming services are acting as catalysts for the company. This
is evident from the 19.5% positive earnings surprise posted by
the company in the last reported quarter.
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