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Directv CEO Says Possible Merger with Dish "Could Be Pro-Consumer"


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#121 OFFLINE   raott

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 07:09 AM

Who says they cannot price per market?

They never have, but that does not necessarily mean they cannot.

Comcast has outlets all over the nation, and for whatever reason, they are not all priced the same. I don't see any reason why Directv cannot charge one rate in one locality and another rate in another.

Is there a reason?


I wouldn't be surprised to see some sort of pricing restrictions in any merger. However, we all know how well that worked out for subscribers of Sirius and XM.
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#122 OFFLINE   harsh

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 08:22 AM

That, of course, assumes all mergers operate that way, which is not the case.

Perhaps you could cite an example of an entertainment media/medium merger/acquisition that wasn't ultimately a downer for consumers.

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#123 OFFLINE   zimm7778

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 08:36 AM

Perhaps you could cite an example of an entertainment media/medium merger/acquisition that wasn't ultimately a downer for consumers.


I wasn't a sub then but was Directv's acquisition of Primestar really a bad thing at the time? I mean looked at with total negativity?

#124 OFFLINE   Hoosier205

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 08:36 AM

Perhaps you could cite an example of an entertainment media/medium merger/acquisition that wasn't ultimately a downer for consumers.


This would would be great for Dish customers. They'd get to experience what it's like with a superior company like DirecTV. It would also put 1/3 of the nation's attorneys out of work without the Dish Network endless legal parade.
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#125 OFFLINE   Carl Spock

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 08:46 AM

Perhaps you could cite an example of an entertainment media/medium merger/acquisition that wasn't ultimately a downer for consumers.


1) Atlantic Records being purchased by Warner Bros. in 1967. It gave Ahmet Ertegun the structure and the money to take his R & B label to the next level. It's hard to imagine he could have signed either Led Zepellin or the Rolling Stones without the purchase. Read "The Last Sultan" by Robert Greenfield for a great book on Ertegun.

2) Pixar's purchase by Walt Disney Corporation in 2006. It gave Pixar the capital to expand the number of films they could put out and a permanent distribution deal. Before the purchase, their distribution deal with Disney had soured.

3) The 2002 purchase of the Boston Red Sox by New England Sports Ventures and John Henry. I don't think you can argue against the success of World Series Championships in 2004 and 2007 after decades of frustration. We'll see if the same group can also revive the Liverpool F.C. from years of poor play. They purchased Liverpool in 2007.

Edited by Carl Spock, 25 September 2012 - 08:59 AM.

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#126 OFFLINE   wilbur_the_goose

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 10:51 AM

I still firmly believe that Echostar would be the company in charge. Just think of why you didn't go with E* and you'll see what I'm fearing.

#127 OFFLINE   Hoosier205

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 10:58 AM

I still firmly believe that Echostar would be the company in charge. Just think of why you didn't go with E* and you'll see what I'm fearing.


Echostar and Dish Network split into two separate companies nearly five years ago.

#128 OFFLINE   hdtvfan0001

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 10:59 AM

Perhaps you could cite an example of an entertainment media/medium merger/acquisition that wasn't ultimately a downer for consumers.

Gee...

With you being a Dish customer, I would have thought you'd be able to cite Echostar's purchases of DISH Network, Hughes networks, Move Networks, and other stellar examples. :rolleyes:
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#129 OFFLINE   archer75

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 11:58 AM

Having had both, and now with direct tv I can say that without a doubt I prefer Dish. The regular out of contract price I was paying with Dish was lower than my 1st year promo price with direct. I also like aspects of Dish's receivers better. Though Direct's receivers do have some nice features.

I'm not sure i'd be a fan of a merger. I could only see prices going up and for many people cable is not an option and the new combined sat company wouldn't have to work as hard to retain you as you'd have no where else to go. At least with the both of them I can threaten to go to the other and usually get the deal I want.

#130 OFFLINE   n3ntj

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 03:08 PM

I believe that we need separate competing satellite and cable cos. to be more consumer friendly and lower prices.
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#131 OFFLINE   mnassour

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 03:39 PM

That appears to be a pessimistic and unfounded perspective.

A wide revenue stream and lowered operating costs (combined support and technologies just to name 2 elements) through merged operations actually would probably reduce the probability of raised rates, or at minimum stabilize them.

In addition, the potential 35 million subscriber total pales in comparison to the cable subscriber total numbers - so plenty of competition would keep an incentive to be competitive.


Really?

That's right, after the Sirius/XM merger choice on the XM side went up and rates went down.

Oh....wait a minit........

Please, look at merger after merger after merger.....that "wide revenue stream" flows right from our pockets into those of the investors.

I lived through Sirius' destruction of XM. No offense, but I'm tired of those (not you) who would piss on my shoes and tell me it's raining.

#132 OFFLINE   oldcrooner

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 04:58 PM

The trouble is that these multi-billion dollar profitable companies play the "buddy" card. Every time they put out a press release that says a decision was made "to save their customers money" they are trying to make us feel like they really care about our money.

Have you ever seen the press release that said "we are dropping this channel or not adding this other channel in order to raise our profits and make more money"? Have you seen a press release that said "we need our annual rate increase will allow us to maintain our 10% profit margin ... or increase our profits beyond 10%"? No ... the "bad news" for consumers is always wrapped in excuses ("just passing on the rate increases we are seeing" or "just keeping your rates down") or "PR" (also spelt BS) that is intended to give their customers a warm fuzzy feeling about the bad news.

And the PR works. There are people who will defend to the death a company that they do not work for and hold no stock in. A company who will gladly continue to raise rates to keep their profits up. A company who will raise rates on retirees on a fixed income and when they can't pay they will let them go and find younger, more affluent customers. Congrats to the PR team for making customers happy about it.

Seeing a company remain reasonably profitable is good for all the reasons mentioned. But I don't mind that people disagree on what level is "reasonable". If a merger such as DirecTV and DISH would bring down costs for the consumer it might be a good thing. But somehow the expectation that consumer prices will continue to rise while costs are reduced for the new company seems to be more likely. Higher prices, more profit. :(


The preceding statement is my own and does not represent the opinion of the site or any company.


Very well and accurately put. Of course, the usuals will pretend that this does not describe the benevolent Directv and Dish companies. :rolleyes:
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#133 OFFLINE   VLaslow

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 07:14 PM

I'd like to think that, sooner or later, price increases can't continue as the customers will simply fade away. Even though we haven't seen it yet on a broad scale, there is a limit to what people can, and will, pay.

The Sirius/XM deal took two failing ccmpanies and made one failing company. That's not the situation with Dish and DirecTV. But, never underestimate the capabilities of a good lobbyist.

#134 OFFLINE   harsh

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Posted 26 September 2012 - 08:10 AM

Gee...

With you being a Dish customer, I would have thought you'd be able to cite Echostar's purchases of DISH Network, Hughes networks, Move Networks, and other stellar examples. :rolleyes:

So you don't have any examples of mergers (as opposed to acquisitions of satellite bandwidth) to support your claim? I was kinda suspicious that you didn't believe what you posted.

BTW, as Hoosier205 accurately pointed out, Echostar didn't purchase DISH. Spinning off Echostar put Echostar in a better position to do STB business with DISH competitors.

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#135 OFFLINE   Richierich

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Posted 26 September 2012 - 08:29 AM

Gee...

With you being a Dish customer, I would have thought you'd be able to cite Echostar's purchases of DISH Network, Hughes networks, Move Networks, and other stellar examples. :rolleyes:


But if the Merger between Dish and Directv goes thru then Harsh would be justified with his Posting on the Directv side of DBSTALK because he then would be a Directv/Dish Customer so Directv Posters could no longer poke fun at him for posting on the Directv side of DBSTALK!!! :lol:
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#136 OFFLINE   Hoosier205

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Posted 26 September 2012 - 08:57 AM

But if the Merger between Dish and Directv goes thru then Harsh would be justified with his Posting on the Directv side of DBSTALK because he then would be a Directv/Dish Customer so Directv Posters could no longer poke fun at him for posting on the Directv side of DBSTALK!!! :lol:


NOOOOOOO! :)
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#137 OFFLINE   Diana C

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Posted 26 September 2012 - 10:34 AM

Mr White can think whatever he wants, but he's dreaming if he thinks this deal is any more likely to be approved than it was last time. Unlike the Sirius/XM deal (and the Sprint/Nextel deal) both DirecTV and Dish Network are financially healthy and vibrant companies. There is no consumer benefit to be gained from a merger of the companies, other than a reduction in operating costs.

The problem with even that benefit is that it is unlikely to have much, if any, effect on customer's bills. The majority of our monthly bill is driven by programming costs, not operating costs. Anyone who thinks that a combined Dish/DirecTV would have more leverage with content providers is dreaming. Even if they kept every current subscriber (and assuming there are not many subscribers to both) they'd have about 34 million subs, making them about 50% larger than the current #1 Comcast (which, at 22 million is about 50% larger than #3 Dish Network separately). But has Comcast's larger size made them able to hold the line on costs any better than Dish? Not for one minute.

In terms of subscriber savings, even if ALL the cost savings were passed on, a merger might mean an annual increase of $1.95 per month instead of $2.00. Hardly enough to overcome antitrust and bandwidth monopoly concerns.

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#138 OFFLINE   tonyd79

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Posted 26 September 2012 - 11:13 AM

Mr White can think whatever he wants, but he's dreaming if he thinks this deal is any more likely to be approved than it was last time. Unlike the Sirius/XM deal (and the Sprint/Nextel deal) both DirecTV and Dish Network are financially healthy and vibrant companies. There is no consumer benefit to be gained from a merger of the companies, other than a reduction in operating costs.

The problem with even that benefit is that it is unlikely to have much, if any, effect on customer's bills. The majority of our monthly bill is driven by programming costs, not operating costs. Anyone who thinks that a combined Dish/DirecTV would have more leverage with content providers is dreaming. Even if they kept every current subscriber (and assuming there are not many subscribers to both) they'd have about 34 million subs, making them about 50% larger than the current #1 Comcast (which, at 22 million is about 50% larger than #3 Dish Network separately). But has Comcast's larger size made them able to hold the line on costs any better than Dish? Not for one minute.

In terms of subscriber savings, even if ALL the cost savings were passed on, a merger might mean an annual increase of $1.95 per month instead of $2.00. Hardly enough to overcome antitrust and bandwidth monopoly concerns.


Not to mention the cost of merging technologies. They can't even afford to shut down mpeg2 SD today, who says they'd have any gain in merging two companies using completely different technologies. The cost savings comes down to things like Human resources and some other functions that would save money.

The cost savings is a mirage.
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#139 OFFLINE   Christopher Gould

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Posted 26 September 2012 - 03:14 PM

Mr White can think whatever he wants, but he's dreaming if he thinks this deal is any more likely to be approved than it was last time. Unlike the Sirius/XM deal (and the Sprint/Nextel deal) both DirecTV and Dish Network are financially healthy and vibrant companies. There is no consumer benefit to be gained from a merger of the companies, other than a reduction in operating costs.

The problem with even that benefit is that it is unlikely to have much, if any, effect on customer's bills. The majority of our monthly bill is driven by programming costs, not operating costs. Anyone who thinks that a combined Dish/DirecTV would have more leverage with content providers is dreaming. Even if they kept every current subscriber (and assuming there are not many subscribers to both) they'd have about 34 million subs, making them about 50% larger than the current #1 Comcast (which, at 22 million is about 50% larger than #3 Dish Network separately). But has Comcast's larger size made them able to hold the line on costs any better than Dish? Not for one minute.

In terms of subscriber savings, even if ALL the cost savings were passed on, a merger might mean an annual increase of $1.95 per month instead of $2.00. Hardly enough to overcome antitrust and bandwidth monopoly concerns.


But does comcast negotiate as 22 million customers or does it do it by area since all channels aren't available in all areas?

#140 OFFLINE   Shades228

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Posted 26 September 2012 - 03:46 PM

The cost savings would be more in the future of contract negotiations and reduced SAC costs. Would the bills go down? No but they may not rise at a steady 3-4% a year either.

If either company had regional pricing then there would be a lot more of concern with price fixing but both companies have national pricing. The people with 6 options have the same cost as the people with 2. Now some loss would be the people with 2 options right now being able to "threaten" to leave to get discounts but eventually this "business model" will evolve and the discounts won't be as they are today.
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