Pegasus CEO Ponders DirecTV Execs, NRTC


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Supporting Founder
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Supporting Founder
Sep 8, 2003
Las Vegas, Nevada
From our friends at

Pegasus Chairman and CEO Marshall Pagon said he expects a big shake-up in DirecTV's management if and when the satellite TV service and its parent Hughes are taken over by News Corp.

"In my opinion it is likely that substantially all of DirecTV's current management will change when News Corp. takes control," Pagon said during the company's third quarter conference call. "It is likely that News Corp.'s vision for DirecTV will differ substantially from that of current management. Therefore, there will be significant changes in both the focus and operation of DirecTV over the next 12 months."

While it's unclear what the specific changes will be, Pagon said his company, which sells DirecTV in rural areas, is "keenly focused on assessing and adjusting to those changes" when they surface.

Pagon also discussed the settlement the National Rural Telecommunications Cooperative reached with DirecTV concerning access to premium programming and other long-standing issues between the two entities. "We were clearly surprised that NRTC decided to seek a separate settlement with DirecTV," Pagon said.

"Obviously, we are disappointed that they did so without consultation of its members. We do not believe that the proposed settlement serves the best interests of its members," he said. Pegasus controls NRTC affiliates.

Pagon said Pegasus' rights to distribute service are unaffected by the DirecTV/NRTC settlement, and its claims against DirecTV are expected to go to federal court next year unless settled between the companies. Pagon said he could rather settle, but "we have no reservation about presenting our case to a judge and jury," he said.

Pegasus said consolidated net revenues decreased $10.1 million to $214.7 million for the quarter. The net loss applicable to common shares decreased $1.6 million to $44.4 million, the company said. DBS net revenues decreased $9.4 million to $207 million.

Pegasus said its DBS business netted a 33,000 subscriber loss, taking its total at the end of third quarter to 1.2 million.
thought(s) on NRTC execs comments

I pray and hope for News Corporation to take over Directv. The NRTC exec is dead on here. Hughes' current management team is inept and running the company into the ground. The entire entourage needs to be shown the door ASAP! Moreover, if/when the new management team is brought, the following things need to be done immediatedly:

1. An extensive top to bottom review of every department. Clean house in every department; put people in place that care about the end user.

2. Refocus the company on customers wants and expectations.

3. Put ALL locals on an off-air tuner!! By doing this, there is opportunity to do locals in HD. Right now the locals push is KILLING bandwith that can be used on HD and national channels.

4. ADD LOTS of national, Public Interest, International and HD channels with SUPERIOR picture quality to the lineup right away. Customers deserve to have lots of choices AND superb picture quality.

5. Combine Directivo and Mediahighway into the ultimate DVR(with four satellite tuners, two OTA tuners, DVD/CD burner, music, pictures and other services).
Of course OTA locals are problematic in rurual areas. That si why NRTC started to push DBS in the first place.
Amen! I live about 12 miles from our local NBC, but their broadcasting tower is some 50(?) miles away, and I can get a somewhat likable picture with a rabbit ear antenna with the right weather conditions, but I live in their grade A signal range. Our local Fox is about 14 miles away, I do not know for sure where there broadcasting tower is, but unless it's an animated show where the characters are brightly colored, I can forget watching it because if it's a dark scene, I can't tell if it's a man or woman.

Our closest ABC and CBS is 75 miles away. We are in their Grade B area, and not in their DMA. Therefore, ABC gave us waivers to receive distant ABCs (GOD BLESS THEM!!), but when we switched receivers after one broke, CBS refused our waiver request. Therefore, it is now virtually unwatchable with my outdoor omnidirectional antenna, and doesn't even come in with the rabbit ears. Our local UPN is about 90 miles away, and I don't even know where the closest WB! is. Later this month, I may try to resubmit a waiver for CBS, but I'm not sure how good our chances are.

Also, I live in an area where cable is not offered. I can look out my window and look a half a mile down the street where Mediacom offers cable, but they said it was not financially viable for them to offer cable to this street. So, T2, wouldn't you want your locals over satellite if you lived in this situation?!

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