- Sep 8, 2003
From our friends at SkyReport.com
In research released Friday, Marc Nabi of Merrill Lynch offered new subscriber guidance for satellite TV powerhouses DirecTV and EchoStar's DISH Network, saying the business still has an opportunity to take customers away from the wired business.
"We do not disagree that the cable industry will always have an advantage over the satellite and telecom industries because of its ability to provide an integrated bundled offer to consumers - video, high speed data and voice," Nabi said. "However, we do think that a reinvigorated Hughes management team and EchoStar's proactive entrepreneurial management can show positive operating momentum during the next several months."
Nabi forecasted that DirecTV could add about 950,000 subscribers in 2004, growing its subscriber base 9 percent year-over-year to 11.6 million. He also forecasted that DISH Network could add 1 million net subscriber additions in 2004.
The analyst said he expects the satellite TV penetration rate as a percent of total households to approach 27 percent at maturity, compared to about 20 percent today.
In one of his notes, Nabi resumed coverage of Hughes with a "buy" rating and established a $20 price objective.