10-Q 1 a11-9586_110q.htm 10-Q

Table of Contents

 

 

 

UNITED STATES

SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION

Washington, D.C.  20549

 


 

Form 10-Q

 

(Mark One)

 

x

QUARTERLY REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934

 

FOR THE QUARTERLY PERIOD ENDED MARCH 31, 2011.

 

OR

 

o

TRANSITION REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934

 

FOR THE TRANSITION PERIOD FROM                        TO                        .

 

Commission File Number:  0-26176

 

DISH Network Corporation

(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)

 

Nevada

 

88-0336997

(State or other jurisdiction of incorporation or organization)

 

(I.R.S. Employer Identification No.)

 

 

 

9601 South Meridian Boulevard
Englewood, Colorado

 

80112

(Address of principal executive offices)

 

(Zip code)

 

(303) 723-1000

(Registrant’s telephone number, including area code)

 

Not Applicable

(Former name, former address and former fiscal year, if changed since last report)

 

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days.  Yes  x   No  o

 

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically and posted on its corporate Web site, if any, every Interactive Data File required to be submitted and posted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T (§232.405 of this chapter) during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit and post such files).  Yes  x   No  o

 

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, or a smaller reporting company.  See the definitions of “large accelerated filer,” “accelerated filer” and “smaller reporting company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.

 

Large accelerated filer x

 

Accelerated filer o

 

 

 

Non-accelerated filer o
(Do not check if a smaller reporting company)

 

Smaller reporting company o

 

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act).  Yes  o  No  x

 

As of April 20, 2011, the registrant’s outstanding common stock consisted of 206,315,632 shares of Class A common stock and 238,435,208 shares of Class B common stock.

 

 

 



Table of Contents

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

 

PART I — FINANCIAL INFORMATION

 

 

 

 

Disclosure Regarding Forward-Looking Statements

i

 

 

 

Item 1.

Financial Statements

 

 

 

 

 

Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets —
March 31, 2011 and December 31, 2010 (Unaudited)

1

 

 

 

 

Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations and Comprehensive Income (Loss)
For the Three Months Ended March 31, 2011 and 2010 (Unaudited)

2

 

 

 

 

Condensed Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows For the
Three Months Ended March 31, 2011 and 2010 (Unaudited)

3

 

 

 

 

Notes to Condensed Consolidated Financial Statements (Unaudited)

4

 

 

 

Item 2.

Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations

33

 

 

 

Item 3.

Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk

51

 

 

 

Item 4.

Controls and Procedures

52

 

 

 

PART II — OTHER INFORMATION

 

 

 

Item 1.

Legal Proceedings

53

 

 

 

Item 1A.

Risk Factors

58

 

 

 

Item 2.

Unregistered Sales of Equity Securities and Use of Proceeds

59

 

 

 

Item 3.

Defaults Upon Senior Securities

None

 

 

 

Item 4.

(Removed and Reserved)

None

 

 

 

Item 5.

Other Information

60

 

 

 

Item 6.

Exhibits

60

 

 

 

 

Signatures

61

 



Table of Contents

 

PART I — FINANCIAL INFORMATION

 

DISCLOSURE REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

 

We make “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 throughout this report.  Whenever you read a statement that is not simply a statement of historical fact (such as when we describe what we “believe,” “intend,” “plan,” “estimate,” “expect” or “anticipate” will occur, and other similar statements), you must remember that our expectations may not be achieved, even though we believe they are reasonable.  We do not guarantee that any future transactions or events described herein will happen as described or that they will happen at all.  You should read this report completely and with the understanding that actual future results may be materially different from what we expect.  Whether actual events or results will conform with our expectations and predictions is subject to a number of risks and uncertainties.  The risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, the following:

 

·                  We face intense and increasing competition from satellite and cable television providers, telecommunications companies and providers of video content via the Internet, especially as the pay-TV industry matures, which may require us to increase subscriber acquisition and retention spending or accept lower subscriber acquisitions and higher subscriber churn.

 

·                  Competition from digital media companies that provide/facilitate the delivery of video content via the Internet, could materially adversely affect us.

 

·                  We may pursue acquisitions and other strategic transactions to complement or expand our business that may not be successful and we may lose up to the entire value of our investment in these acquisitions and transactions.

 

·                  If we do not improve our operational performance and customer satisfaction, our gross new subscriber additions may decrease and our subscriber churn may increase.

 

·                  If DISH Network gross new subscriber additions decrease, or if subscriber churn, subscriber acquisition costs or retention costs increase, our financial performance will be adversely affected.

 

·                  Economic weakness, including higher unemployment and reduced consumer spending, may adversely affect our ability to grow or maintain our business.

 

·                  Programming expenses are increasing and could adversely affect our future financial condition and results of operations.

 

·                  We depend on others to provide the programming that we offer to our subscribers and, if we lose access to this programming, our gross new subscriber additions may decline and subscriber churn may increase.

 

·                  We may be required to make substantial additional investments to maintain competitive programming offerings.

 

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·                  Technology in our industry changes rapidly and could cause our services and products to become obsolete.  We may have to upgrade or replace subscriber equipment and make substantial investments in our infrastructure to remain competitive.

 

·                  Increased distribution of video content via the Internet could expose us to regulatory risk.

 

·                  Our business depends on certain intellectual property rights and on not infringing the intellectual property rights of others.

 

·                  Any failure or inadequacy of our information technology infrastructure could harm our business.

 

·                  We may need additional capital, which may not be available on acceptable terms or at all, to continue investing in our business and to finance acquisitions and other strategic transactions.

 

·                  If Voom prevails in its breach of contract suit against us, we could be required to pay substantial damages, which would have a material adverse affect on our financial position and results of operations.

 

·                  A portion of our investment portfolio is invested in securities that have experienced limited or no liquidity and may not be immediately accessible to support our financing needs.

 

·                  We rely on EchoStar Corporation, or EchoStar, to design and develop all of our new set-top boxes and certain related components, and to provide transponder capacity, digital broadcast operations and other services to us.  Our business would be adversely affected if EchoStar ceases to provide these services to us and we are unable to obtain suitable replacement services from third parties.

 

·                  We rely on one or a limited number of vendors, and the inability of these key vendors to meet our needs could have a material adverse effect on our business.

 

·                  Our programming signals are subject to theft, and we are vulnerable to other forms of fraud that could require us to make significant expenditures to remedy.

 

·                  We depend on third parties to solicit orders for DISH Network services that represent a significant percentage of our total gross subscriber acquisitions.

 

·                  Our competitors may be able to leverage their relationships with programmers so that they are able to reduce their programming costs and offer exclusive content that will place them at a competitive advantage to us.

 

·                  We depend on the Cable Act for access to programming from cable-affiliate programmers at cost-effective rates.

 

·                  We face increasing competition from other distributors of foreign language programming that may limit our ability to maintain our foreign language programming subscriber base.

 

·                  Our local programming strategy faces uncertainty because we may not be able to obtain necessary retransmission consents at acceptable rates from local network stations.

 

·                  The injunction against our retransmission of distant networks, currently waived, may be reinstated.

 

·                  We are subject to significant regulatory oversight and changes in applicable regulatory requirements, including any adoption or modification of laws or regulations relating to the Internet, which could adversely affect our business.

 

·                  We have made a substantial investment in certain 700 MHz wireless licenses and will be required to make significant additional investments or partner with others to commercialize these licenses.

 

·                  We have substantial debt outstanding and may incur additional debt.

 

·                  We have limited owned and leased satellite capacity and failures or reduced capacity could adversely affect our business.

 

·                  Our owned and leased satellites are subject to construction, launch, operational and environmental risks that could limit our ability to utilize these satellites.

 

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·                  We generally do not have commercial insurance coverage on the satellites we use and could face significant impairment charges if one of our satellites fails.

 

·                  We may have potential conflicts of interest with EchoStar due to our common ownership and management.

 

·                  We rely on key personnel and the loss of their services may negatively affect our businesses.

 

·                  We are party to various lawsuits which, if adversely decided, could have a significant adverse impact on our business, particularly lawsuits regarding intellectual property.

 

·                  Our business depends on Federal Communications Commission, or FCC, licenses that can expire or be revoked or modified and applications for FCC licenses that may not be granted.

 

·                  We are subject to digital HD “carry-one, carry-all” requirements that cause capacity constraints.

 

·                  It may be difficult for a third party to acquire us, even if doing so may be beneficial to our shareholders, because of our ownership structure.

 

·                  We are controlled by one principal stockholder who is also our Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer.

 

·                  There can be no assurance that there will not be deficiencies leading to material weaknesses in our internal control over financial reporting.

 

·                  We may face other risks described from time to time in periodic and current reports we file with the Securities and Exchange Commission, or SEC.

 

All cautionary statements made herein should be read as being applicable to all forward-looking statements wherever they appear.  Investors should consider the risks described herein and should not place undue reliance on any forward-looking statements.  We assume no responsibility for updating forward-looking information contained or incorporated by reference herein or in other reports we file with the SEC.

 

In this report, the words “DISH Network,” the “Company,” “we,” “our” and “us” refer to DISH Network Corporation and its subsidiaries, unless the context otherwise requires.  “EchoStar” refers to EchoStar Corporation and its subsidiaries.

 

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DISH NETWORK CORPORATION

CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS

(Dollars in thousands, except share amounts)

(Unaudited)

 

 

 

As of

 

 

 

March 31,

 

December 31,

 

 

 

2011

 

2010

 

Assets

 

 

 

 

 

Current Assets:

 

 

 

 

 

Cash and cash equivalents

 

$

1,163,522

 

$

640,672

 

Marketable investment securities (Note 4)

 

2,250,215

 

2,299,705

 

Trade accounts receivable - other, net of allowance for doubtful accounts of $13,418 and $29,650, respectively

 

718,979

 

771,898

 

Trade accounts receivable - EchoStar, net of allowance for doubtful accounts of zero

 

21,854

 

14,155

 

Inventory

 

427,699

 

487,575

 

Deferred tax assets

 

233,645

 

216,899

 

Other current assets

 

180,841

 

142,489

 

Total current assets

 

4,996,755

 

4,573,393

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Noncurrent Assets:

 

 

 

 

 

Restricted cash and marketable investment securities (Note 4)

 

186,440

 

144,437

 

Property and equipment, net of accumulated depreciation of $2,725,748 and $2,684,521, respectively

 

3,255,356

 

3,232,348

 

FCC authorizations

 

1,391,441

 

1,391,441

 

Marketable and other investment securities (Note 4)

 

369,535

 

224,517

 

Other noncurrent assets, net

 

81,086

 

66,017

 

Total noncurrent assets

 

5,283,858

 

5,058,760

 

Total assets

 

$

10,280,613

 

$

9,632,153

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Liabilities and Stockholders’ Equity (Deficit)

 

 

 

 

 

Current Liabilities:

 

 

 

 

 

Trade accounts payable - other

 

$

120,726

 

$

161,767

 

Trade accounts payable - EchoStar

 

250,050

 

238,997

 

Deferred revenue and other

 

845,799

 

803,768

 

Accrued programming

 

1,053,030

 

1,089,988

 

Litigation accrual (Note 11)

 

284,346

 

619,022

 

Other accrued expenses

 

710,100

 

554,864

 

Current portion of long-term debt and capital lease obligations

 

1,027,622

 

1,030,895

 

Total current liabilities

 

4,291,673

 

4,499,301

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Long-Term Obligations, Net of Current Portion:

 

 

 

 

 

Long-term debt and capital lease obligations, net of current portion

 

5,478,723

 

5,484,041

 

Deferred tax liabilities

 

806,856

 

567,686

 

Long-term deferred revenue, distribution and carriage payments and other long-term liabilities

 

205,833

 

214,568

 

Total long-term obligations, net of current portion

 

6,491,412

 

6,266,295

 

Total liabilities

 

10,783,085

 

10,765,596

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Commitments and Contingencies (Note 9)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stockholders’ Equity (Deficit):

 

 

 

 

 

Class A common stock, $.01 par value, 1,600,000,000 shares authorized, 261,149,191 and 260,917,977 shares issued, 205,030,931 and 204,799,717 shares outstanding, respectively

 

2,611

 

2,609

 

Class B common stock, $.01 par value, 800,000,000 shares authorized, 238,435,208 shares issued and outstanding

 

2,384

 

2,384

 

Class C common stock, $.01 par value, 800,000,000 shares authorized, none issued and outstanding

 

 

 

Additional paid-in capital

 

2,190,738

 

2,171,799

 

Accumulated other comprehensive income (loss)

 

154,861

 

93,357

 

Accumulated earnings (deficit)

 

(1,285,225

)

(1,834,619

)

Treasury stock, at cost

 

(1,569,459

)

(1,569,459

)

Total DISH Network stockholders’ equity (deficit)

 

(504,090

)

(1,133,929

)

Noncontrolling interest

 

1,618

 

486

 

Total stockholders’ equity (deficit)

 

(502,472

)

(1,133,443

)

Total liabilities and stockholders’ equity (deficit)

 

$

10,280,613

 

$

9,632,153

 

 

The accompanying notes are an integral part of these condensed consolidated financial statements.

 

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DISH NETWORK CORPORATION

CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF OPERATIONS

AND COMPREHENSIVE INCOME (LOSS)

(In thousands, except per share amounts)

(Unaudited)

 

 

 

For the Three Months

 

 

 

Ended March 31,

 

 

 

2011

 

2010

 

Revenue:

 

 

 

 

 

Subscriber-related revenue

 

$

3,199,099

 

$

3,036,133

 

Equipment sales and other revenue

 

16,001

 

13,830

 

Equipment sales - EchoStar

 

3

 

912

 

Services and other revenue - EchoStar

 

9,028

 

6,520

 

Total revenue

 

3,224,131

 

3,057,395

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Costs and Expenses:

 

 

 

 

 

Subscriber-related expenses (exclusive of depreciation shown below - Note 6)

 

1,693,695

 

1,639,362

 

Satellite and transmission expenses (exclusive of depreciation shown below - Note 6):

 

 

 

 

 

EchoStar

 

108,913

 

101,478

 

Other

 

10,200

 

9,986

 

Equipment, services and other cost of sales

 

22,267

 

16,902

 

Subscriber acquisition costs:

 

 

 

 

 

Cost of sales - subscriber promotion subsidies - EchoStar (exclusive of depreciation shown below - Note 6)

 

54,426

 

26,903

 

Other subscriber promotion subsidies

 

226,841

 

313,683

 

Subscriber acquisition advertising

 

73,632

 

71,427

 

Total subscriber acquisition costs

 

354,899

 

412,013

 

General and administrative expenses - EchoStar (exclusive of depreciation shown below - Note 6)

 

11,940

 

11,430

 

General and administrative expenses (exclusive of depreciation shown below - Note 6)

 

149,844

 

139,390

 

Litigation expense (Note 11)

 

(340,677

)

30,193

 

Depreciation and amortization (Note 6)

 

229,697

 

239,662

 

Total costs and expenses

 

2,240,778

 

2,600,416

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Operating income (loss)

 

983,353

 

456,979

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Other Income (Expense):

 

 

 

 

 

Interest income

 

6,286

 

5,777

 

Interest expense, net of amounts capitalized

 

(120,179

)

(112,947

)

Other, net

 

11,633

 

4,655

 

Total other income (expense)

 

(102,260

)

(102,515

)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Income (loss) before income taxes

 

881,093

 

354,464

 

Income tax (provision) benefit, net

 

(331,767

)

(123,549

)

Net income (loss)

 

549,326

 

230,915

 

Less: Net income (loss) attributable to noncontrolling interest

 

(68

)

(32

)

Net income (loss) attributable to DISH Network common shareholders

 

$

549,394

 

$

230,947

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Comprehensive Income (Loss):

 

 

 

 

 

Net income (loss)

 

$

549,326

 

$

230,915

 

Unrealized holding gains (losses) on available-for-sale securities

 

67,800

 

18,268

 

Recognition of previously unrealized (gains) losses on available-for-sale securities included in net income (loss)

 

(6,296

)

(277

)

Comprehensive income (loss)

 

610,830

 

248,906

 

Less: Comprehensive income (loss) attributable to noncontrolling interest

 

(68

)

(32

)

Comprehensive income (loss) attributable to DISH Network common shareholders

 

$

610,898

 

$

248,938

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Weighted-average common shares outstanding - Class A and B common stock:

 

 

 

 

 

Basic

 

443,360

 

446,732

 

Diluted

 

448,850

 

447,530

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Earnings per share - Class A and B common stock:

 

 

 

 

 

Basic net income (loss) per share attributable to DISH Network common shareholders

 

$

1.24

 

$

0.52

 

Diluted net income (loss) per share attributable to DISH Network common shareholders

 

$

1.22

 

$

0.52

 

 

The accompanying notes are an integral part of these condensed consolidated financial statements.

 

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DISH NETWORK CORPORATION

CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF CASH FLOWS

(In thousands)

(Unaudited)

 

 

 

For the Three Months

 

 

 

Ended March 31,

 

 

 

2011

 

2010

 

Cash Flows From Operating Activities:

 

 

 

 

 

Net income (loss)

 

$

549,326

 

$

230,915

 

Adjustments to reconcile net income (loss) to net cash flows from operating activities:

 

 

 

 

 

Depreciation and amortization

 

229,697

 

239,662

 

Realized and unrealized losses (gains) on investments

 

(11,618

)

(4,527

)

Non-cash, stock-based compensation

 

15,177

 

6,316

 

Deferred tax expense (benefit)

 

221,798

 

(30,918

)

Other, net

 

3,826

 

5,676

 

Change in noncurrent assets

 

(4,175

)

(2,005

)

Change in long-term deferred revenue, distribution and carriage payments and other long-term liabilities

 

(8,738

)

329

 

Changes in current assets and current liabilities, net

 

(150,998

)

280,566

 

Net cash flows from operating activities

 

844,295

 

726,014

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cash Flows From Investing Activities:

 

 

 

 

 

Purchases of marketable investment securities

 

(1,214,236

)

(1,576,756

)

Sales and maturities of marketable investment securities

 

1,284,087

 

1,274,057

 

Purchases of property and equipment

 

(232,952

)

(320,370

)

Launch service assigned from EchoStar (Note 10)

 

 

(102,913

)

Change in restricted cash and marketable investment securities

 

(42,000

)

17

 

Purchase of strategic investments included in noncurrent marketable and other investment securities

 

(122,800

)

 

Proceeds from sale of strategic investments

 

11,327

 

15,000

 

Other

 

(291

)

(109

)

Net cash flows from investing activities

 

(316,865

)

(711,074

)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cash Flows From Financing Activities:

 

 

 

 

 

Repayment of long-term debt and capital lease obligations

 

(8,498

)

(7,079

)

Class A common stock repurchases

 

 

(14,497

)

Net proceeds from Class A common stock options exercised and issued under the Employee Stock Purchase Plan

 

3,596

 

709

 

Other

 

322

 

 

Net cash flows from financing activities

 

(4,580

)

(20,867

)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Net increase (decrease) in cash and cash equivalents

 

522,850

 

(5,927

)

Cash and cash equivalents, beginning of period

 

640,672

 

105,844

 

Cash and cash equivalents, end of period

 

$

1,163,522

 

$

99,917

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Supplemental Disclosure of Cash Flow Information:

 

 

 

 

 

Cash paid for interest (including capitalized interest)

 

$

114,752

 

$

119,361

 

Capitalized interest

 

$

 

$

8,302

 

Cash received for interest

 

$

7,363

 

$

7,481

 

Cash paid for income taxes

 

$

7,440

 

$

35,867

 

 

The accompanying notes are an integral part of these condensed consolidated financial statements.

 

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DISH NETWORK CORPORATION

NOTES TO CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS

(Unaudited)

 

1.              Organization and Business Activities

 

Principal Business

 

DISH Network Corporation is a holding company.  Its subsidiaries (which together with DISH Network Corporation are referred to as “DISH Network,” the “Company,” “we,” “us” and/or “our”) operate the DISH Network® direct broadcast satellite (“DBS”) subscription television service in the United States which had 14.191 million subscribers as of March 31, 2011.  We have deployed substantial resources to develop the “DISH Network DBS System.”  The DISH Network DBS System consists of our licensed Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) authorized DBS and Fixed Satellite Service (“FSS”) spectrum, our owned and leased satellites, receiver systems, third-party broadcast operations, customer service facilities, leased fiber network, in-home service and call center operations, and certain other assets utilized in our operations.

 

On January 1, 2008, we completed the distribution of our technology and set-top box business and certain infrastructure assets (the “Spin-off”) into a separate publicly-traded company, EchoStar Corporation (“EchoStar”).  DISH Network and EchoStar operate as separate publicly-traded companies, and neither entity has any ownership interest in the other.  However, a substantial majority of the voting power of the shares of both companies is owned beneficially by Charles W. Ergen, our Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer or by certain trusts established by Mr. Ergen for the benefit of his family.

 

2.              Summary of Significant Accounting Policies

 

Basis of Presentation

 

The accompanying unaudited Condensed Consolidated Financial Statements have been prepared in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States (“GAAP”) and with the instructions to Form 10-Q and Article 10 of Regulation S-X for interim financial information.  Accordingly, these statements do not include all of the information and notes required for complete financial statements prepared under GAAP.  In our opinion, all adjustments (consisting of normal recurring adjustments) considered necessary for a fair presentation have been included.  Our results of operations for the interim periods presented are not necessarily indicative of the results that may be expected for the full year.  For further information, refer to the Consolidated Financial Statements and notes thereto included in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2010 (“2010 10-K”).  Certain prior period amounts have been reclassified to conform to the current period presentation.

 

Principles of Consolidation

 

We consolidate all majority owned subsidiaries, investments in entities in which we have controlling influence and variable interest entities where we have been determined to be the primary beneficiary.  Non-majority owned investments are accounted for using the equity method when we have the ability to significantly influence the operating decisions of the investee.  When we do not have the ability to significantly influence the operating decisions of an investee, the cost method is used.  All significant intercompany accounts and transactions have been eliminated in consolidation.

 

Use of Estimates

 

The preparation of financial statements in conformity with GAAP requires us to make estimates and assumptions that affect the reported amounts of assets and liabilities and disclosure of contingent assets and liabilities at the date of the financial statements and the reported amounts of revenue and expense for each reporting period.  Estimates are used in accounting for, among other things, allowances for doubtful accounts, self-insurance obligations, deferred taxes and related valuation allowances, uncertain tax positions, loss contingencies, fair value of financial instruments, fair value of options granted under our stock-based compensation plans, fair value of assets and liabilities acquired in business

 

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DISH NETWORK CORPORATION

NOTES TO CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS Continued

(Unaudited)

 

combinations, capital leases, asset impairments, useful lives of property, equipment and intangible assets, retailer incentives, programming expenses, subscriber lives and royalty obligations.  Weak economic conditions have increased the inherent uncertainty in the estimates and assumptions indicated above.  Actual results may differ from previously estimated amounts, and such differences may be material to the Condensed Consolidated Financial Statements.  Estimates and assumptions are reviewed periodically, and the effects of revisions are reflected prospectively in the period they occur.

 

Fair Value of Financial Instruments

 

As of March 31, 2011 and December 31, 2010, the carrying value for cash and cash equivalents, current marketable investment securities, trade accounts receivable, net of allowance for doubtful accounts, and current liabilities is equal to or approximates fair value due to their short-term nature or proximity to current market rates.

 

Fair values for our publicly traded debt securities are based on quoted market prices.  The fair values of our private debt is estimated based on an analysis in which we evaluate market conditions, related securities, various public and private offerings, and other publicly available information.  In performing this analysis, we make various assumptions regarding, among other things, credit spreads, and the impact of these factors on the value of the notes.  See Note 7 for the fair value of our long-term debt.

 

3.              Basic and Diluted Net Income (Loss) Per Share

 

We present both basic earnings per share (“EPS”) and diluted EPS.  Basic EPS excludes potential dilution and is computed by dividing “Net income (loss) attributable to DISH Network common shareholders” by the weighted-average number of common shares outstanding for the period.  Diluted EPS reflects the potential dilution that could occur if stock awards were exercised and convertible securities were converted to common stock.  The potential dilution from stock awards was computed using the treasury stock method based on the average market value of our Class A common stock.  The following table presents earnings per share amounts for all periods and the basic and diluted weighted-average shares outstanding used in the calculation.

 

 

 

For the Three Months

 

 

 

Ended March 31,

 

 

 

2011

 

2010

 

 

 

(In thousands, except per share amounts)

 

Net income (loss) attributable to DISH Network common shareholders

 

$

549,394

 

$

 230,947

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Weighted-average common shares outstanding - Class A and B common stock:

 

 

 

 

 

Basic

 

443,360

 

446,732

 

Dilutive impact of stock awards outstanding

 

5,490

 

798

 

Diluted

 

448,850

 

447,530

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Earnings per share - Class A and B common stock:

 

 

 

 

 

Basic net income (loss) per share attributable to DISH Network common shareholders

 

$

1.24

 

$

0.52

 

Diluted net income (loss) per share attributable to DISH Network common shareholders

 

$

1.22

 

$

0.52

 

 

As of March 31, 2011 and 2010, there were stock awards to purchase 7.1 million and 12.1 million shares, respectively, of Class A common stock outstanding, not included in the weighted-average common shares outstanding above, as their effect is antidilutive.

 

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DISH NETWORK CORPORATION

NOTES TO CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS Continued

(Unaudited)

 

Vesting of options and rights to acquire shares of our Class A common stock (“Restricted Performance Units”) granted pursuant to our performance based stock incentive plans is contingent upon meeting certain goals which are not yet probable of being achieved.  As a consequence, the following are also not included in the diluted EPS calculation.

 

 

 

As of March 31,

 

 

 

2011

 

2010

 

 

 

(In thousands)

 

Performance based options

 

10,859

 

9,219

 

Restricted Performance Units and other

 

1,101

 

1,016

 

Total

 

11,960

 

10,235

 

 

4.      Marketable Investment Securities, Restricted Cash and Other Investment Securities

 

Our marketable investment securities, restricted cash and other investment securities consist of the following:

 

 

 

As of

 

 

 

March 31,

 

December 31,

 

 

 

2011

 

2010

 

 

 

(In thousands)

 

Marketable investment securities:

 

 

 

 

 

Current marketable investment securities - VRDNs

 

$

1,165,177

 

$

1,334,081

 

Current marketable investment securities - strategic

 

198,708

 

211,141

 

Current marketable investment securities - other

 

886,330

 

754,483

 

Total current marketable investment securities

 

2,250,215

 

2,299,705

 

Restricted marketable investment securities (1)

 

80,390

 

62,196

 

Noncurrent marketable investment securities - ARS and MBS (2)

 

123,191

 

119,121

 

Total marketable investment securities

 

2,453,796

 

2,481,022

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Restricted cash and cash equivalents (1)

 

106,050

 

82,241

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Other investment securities:

 

 

 

 

 

Other investment securities - cost method

 

2,805

 

2,805

 

Other investment securities

 

243,539

 

102,591

 

Total other investment securities (2)

 

246,344

 

105,396

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total marketable investment securities, restricted cash and other investment securities

 

$

2,806,190

 

$

2,668,659

 

 


(1)          Restricted marketable investment securities and restricted cash and cash equivalents are included in “Restricted cash and marketable investment securities” on our Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets.

 

(2)          Noncurrent marketable investment securities — auction rate securities (“ARS”), mortgage backed securities (“MBS”) and other investment securities are included in “Marketable and other investment securities” on our Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets.

 

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DISH NETWORK CORPORATION

NOTES TO CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS Continued

(Unaudited)

 

Marketable Investment Securities

 

Our marketable investment securities portfolio consists of various debt and equity instruments, all of which are classified as available-for-sale.

 

Current Marketable Investment Securities - VRDNs

 

Variable rate demand notes (“VRDNs”) are long-term floating rate municipal bonds with embedded put options that allow the bondholder to sell the security at par plus accrued interest.  All of the put options are secured by a pledged liquidity source.  Our VRDN portfolio is comprised of investments in many municipalities, which are backed by financial institutions or other highly rated companies that serve as the pledged liquidity source.  While they are classified as marketable investment securities, the put option allows VRDNs to be liquidated generally on a same day or on a five business day settlement basis.

 

Current Marketable Investment Securities - Strategic

 

Our current strategic marketable investment securities include strategic and financial investments in public companies that are highly speculative and have experienced and continue to experience volatility.  As of March 31, 2011, a significant portion of our strategic investment portfolio consisted of securities of several issuers, and the value of that portfolio depends on those issuers.

 

We account for certain debt securities acquired at a discount under the cost recovery method, partial accrual or full accrual methods based on management’s quarterly evaluation of these securities.  These debt securities were purchased at a discount due to their credit quality.  As a result, the yield that may be accreted (accretable yield) is limited to the excess of our estimate of undiscounted expected principal, interest, and other cash flows (including the effects of prepayments) expected to be collected over our initial investment.  The face value and carrying value, which is equal to fair value, of these securities as of March 31, 2011 and December 31, 2010 was $16 million.  The total discount on these securities was $2 million as of March 31, 2011 with $2 million classified as accretable yield.  The total discount on these securities was $3 million as of December 31, 2010 with $3 million classified as accretable yield.

 

Current Marketable Investment Securities - Other

 

Our current marketable investment securities portfolio includes investments in various debt instruments including corporate and government bonds.

 

Restricted Cash and Marketable Investment Securities

 

As of March 31, 2011 and December 31, 2010, our restricted marketable investment securities, together with our restricted cash, included amounts required as collateral for our letters of credit or surety bonds and for our litigation with TiVo (See Note 11) and ESPN (See Note 9).

 

Noncurrent Marketable Investment Securities — ARS and MBS

 

We have investments in ARS and MBS which are classified as available-for-sale securities and reported at fair value.  Events in the credit markets have reduced or eliminated current liquidity for certain of our ARS and MBS investments.  As a result, we classify these investments as noncurrent assets, as we intend to hold these investments until they recover or mature.  See below for further discussion on the July 1, 2010 fair value election on certain ARS investments.

 

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DISH NETWORK CORPORATION

NOTES TO CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS Continued

(Unaudited)

 

The valuation of our ARS and MBS investments portfolio is subject to uncertainties that are difficult to estimate.  Due to the lack of observable market quotes for identical assets, we utilize analyses that rely on Level 2 and/or Level 3 inputs, as defined in “Fair Value Measurements.”  These inputs include, among other things, observed prices on similar assets as well as our assumptions and estimates related to the counterparty credit quality, default risk underlying the security and overall capital market liquidity.  These securities were also compared, when possible, to other observable market data for financial instruments with similar characteristics.

 

Fair Value Election.  As of March 31, 2011 our ARS and MBS noncurrent marketable investment securities portfolio of $123 million includes $66 million of securities accounted for under the fair value method.  In March 2010, the FASB issued Accounting Standards Update 2010-11 (“ASU 2010-11”), Derivatives and Hedging:  Scope Exception Related to Embedded Credit Derivatives.  ASU 2010-11 clarifies the type of embedded credit derivative that is exempt from certain bifurcation requirements.  Only one form of embedded credit derivative qualifies for the exemption - one that is related to the subordination of one financial instrument to another.  As a result, entities that have contracts containing an embedded credit derivative feature in a form other than subordination may need to separately account for the embedded credit derivative feature.  On July 1, 2010, we elected to apply the fair value option to certain of our ARS portfolio impacted by ASU 2010-11.  As a result, a $50 million loss, net of tax, related to these ARS in “Accumulated other comprehensive income (loss)” within “Total stockholders’ equity (deficit)” as of June 30, 2010 was included as a cumulative-effect adjustment to “Accumulated earnings (deficit).”  All changes in the fair value of these investments after June 30, 2010 are recognized in our results of operations and included in “Other, net” income and expense on our Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations and Comprehensive Income (Loss) and detailed in the table titled “Gains and Losses on Sales and Changes in Carrying Value of Investments” below.

 

Other Investment Securities

 

We have a few strategic investments in certain debt and equity securities that are included in noncurrent “Marketable and other investment securities” on our Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets accounted for using the cost, equity and/or fair value methods of accounting.

 

Our ability to realize value from our strategic investments in companies that are not publicly traded depends on the success of those companies’ businesses and their ability to obtain sufficient capital to execute their business plans.  Because private markets are not as liquid as public markets, there is also increased risk that we will not be able to sell these investments, or that when we desire to sell them we will not be able to obtain fair value for them.

 

DBSD North America (ICO)

 

Over the past several years, we have made various strategic investments in DBSD North America Inc. (“DBSD North America”), a subsidiary of ICO Global Communications (Holdings) Limited (“ICO”).  DBSD North America is developing an advanced hybrid system which combines both satellite and terrestrial communications capabilities capable of supporting wireless voice, data and/or Internet services throughout the United States.  We have committed, through various agreements described below, to acquire 100% of the equity of reorganized DBSD North America for approximately $1.4 billion.  Our ultimate acquisition of 100% of the equity of reorganized DBSD North America is subject to the satisfaction of certain conditions, including approval by the FCC and DBSD North America’s emergence from bankruptcy.

 

Investment in DBSD North America as of the Balance Sheet Dates.  As of March 31, 2011 and December 31, 2010, our other investment securities portfolio included DBSD North America’s 7.5% Convertible Senior Secured Notes due 2009 of $112 million and $56 million, respectively.  In addition, as of March 31, 2011 and December 31, 2010, we held a $47 million line of credit pursuant to the Amended and Restated Revolving Credit Agreement, dated as of April 7, 2008 between us and DBSD North America.  During the quarter ended March 31, 2011, we made additional investments in DBSD North America pursuant to various agreements discussed below.

 

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DISH NETWORK CORPORATION

NOTES TO CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS Continued

(Unaudited)

 

Investment Agreement.  On February 1, 2011, we entered into an $87.5 million Credit Facility with DBSD North America and committed to acquire 100% of the equity of reorganized DBSD North America (the “Investment Agreement”) for approximately $1.4 billion subject to certain adjustments, including interest accruing on DBSD North America’s existing debt.  As of March 31, 2011, we had funded $50 million under the Credit Facility.

 

On February 24, 2011 and again on March 15, 2011, we amended the Investment Agreement (the “Revised Investment Agreement”).  Pursuant to the Revised Investment Agreement, on March 22, 2011, we initiated a tender offer to purchase all of DBSD North America’s outstanding 7.5% Convertible Senior Secured Notes due 2009, certain claims against a DBSD North America’s debtor affiliate and certain allowed claims against DBSD North America.  The tender offer expired on April 18, 2011 and on April 20, 2011 we made payments of approximately $746 million to purchase tendered DBSD North America’s 7.5% Convertible Senior Secured Notes due 2009, certain claims against a DBSD’s debtor affiliate and claims against DBSD North America.

 

Restructuring Support Agreement and Implementation Agreement.  In connection with the Revised Investment Agreement on March 15, 2011, we entered into a Restructuring Support Agreement and an Implementation Agreement with ICO Global Communications (Holdings) Limited (“ICO”), the parent company of DBSD North America,  pursuant to which ICO provided us with certain assets, rights and ICO’s support of the reorganization of DBSD North America in exchange for approximately $325 million in consideration, $290 million of which will be creditable against any amounts payable to ICO or any successor under the plan of reorganization of DBSD North America.  We have also agreed to indemnify ICO against certain liabilities in connection with certain pending litigation related to DBSD North America.

 

On March 21, 2011, we paid $35 million to ICO pursuant to the Implementation Agreement, which is included in “Marketable and other investment securities” on the Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets as of March 31, 2011.  On April 26, 2011, subsequent to the date of the Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheet, we made a second payment of approximately $280 million to ICO pursuant to the Implementation Agreement for the capital stock of DBSD North America.

 

Unrealized Gains (Losses) on Marketable Investment Securities

 

As of March 31, 2011 and December 31, 2010, we had accumulated net unrealized gains of $155 million and $93 million, both net of related tax effect, respectively, as a part of “Accumulated other comprehensive income (loss)” within “Total stockholders’ equity (deficit).”  A full valuation allowance has been established against any deferred taxes that are capital in nature.  The components of our available-for-sale investments are detailed in the table below.

 

 

 

As of March 31, 2011

 

As of December 31, 2010

 

 

 

Marketable

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Marketable

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Investment

 

Unrealized

 

Investment

 

Unrealized

 

 

 

Securities

 

Gains

 

Losses

 

Net

 

Securities

 

Gains

 

Losses

 

Net

 

 

 

(In thousands)

 

Debt securities:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

VRDNs

 

$

1,165,177

 

$

 

$

 

$

 

$

1,334,081

 

$

 

$

 

$

 

ARS and MBS

 

57,377

 

906

 

(10,152

)

(9,246

)

56,430

 

902

 

(12,262

)

(11,360

)

Other (including restricted)

 

1,094,404

 

89,372

 

(1,271

)

88,101

 

888,621

 

32,256

 

(1,676

)

30,580

 

Equity securities:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Other

 

182,669

 

83,953

 

(7,949

)

76,004

 

195,022

 

82,565

 

(8,429

)

74,136

 

Subtotal

 

2,499,627

 

$

174,231

 

$

(19,372

)

$

154,859

 

2,474,154

 

$

115,723

 

$

(22,367

)

$

93,356

 

ARS fair value election

 

65,814

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

62,691

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Less certain other investment securities

 

(111,645

)

 

 

 

 

 

 

(55,823

)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total marketable investment securities

 

$

2,453,796

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

$

2,481,022

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As of March 31, 2011, restricted and non-restricted marketable investment securities include debt securities of $1.951 billion with contractual maturities of one year or less and $432 million with contractual maturities greater than one year.  Actual maturities may differ from contractual maturities as a result of our ability to sell these securities prior to maturity.

 

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DISH NETWORK CORPORATION

NOTES TO CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS Continued

(Unaudited)

 

Marketable Investment Securities in a Loss Position

 

The following table reflects the length of time that the individual securities, accounted for as available-for-sale, have been in an unrealized loss position, aggregated by investment category.  As of March 31, 2011 and December 31, 2010, the unrealized losses on our investments in equity securities represent a company in the technology industry.  We are not aware of any specific factors which indicate the unrealized losses in these investments are due to anything other than temporary market fluctuations.  As of March 31, 2011 and December 31, 2010, the unrealized losses on our investments in debt securities primarily represent investments in auction rate, mortgage and asset-backed securities.  We do not intend to sell our investments in these debt securities before they recover or mature, and it is more likely than not that we will hold these investments until that time.  In addition, we are not aware of any specific factors indicating that the underlying issuers of these debt securities would not be able to pay interest as it becomes due or repay the principal at maturity.  Therefore, we believe that these changes in the estimated fair values of these marketable investment securities are related to temporary market fluctuations.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As of March 31, 2011

 

 

 

Primary

 

Total

 

Less than Six Months

 

Six to Nine Months

 

Nine Months or More

 

Investment

 

Reason for

 

Fair

 

Fair

 

Unrealized

 

Fair

 

Unrealized

 

Fair

 

Unrealized

 

Category

 

Unrealized Loss

 

Value

 

Value

 

Loss

 

Value

 

Loss

 

Value

 

Loss

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(In thousands)

 

Debt securities

 

Temporary market fluctuations

 

$

370,957

 

$

275,992

 

$

(268

)

$

1,340

 

$

(7

)

$

93,625

 

$

(11,148

)

Equity securities

 

Temporary market fluctuations

 

27,942

 

27,942

 

(7,949

)

 

 

 

 

Total

 

 

 

$

398,899

 

$

303,934

 

$

(8,217

)

$

1,340

 

$

(7

)

$

93,625

 

$

(11,148

)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As of December 31, 2010

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(In thousands)

 

Debt securities

 

Temporary market fluctuations

 

$

312,857

 

$

93,072

 

$

(174

)

$

26,182

 

$

(103

)

$

193,603

 

$

(13,661

)

Equity securities

 

Temporary market fluctuations

 

26,890

 

26,890

 

(8,429

)

 

 

 

 

Total

 

 

 

$

339,747

 

$

119,962

 

$

(8,603

)

$

26,182

 

$

(103

)

$

193,603

 

$

(13,661

)

 

Fair Value Measurements

 

We determine fair value based on the exchange price that would be received for an asset or paid to transfer a liability (an exit price) in the principal or most advantageous market for the asset or liability in an orderly transaction between market participants.  Market or observable inputs are the preferred source of values, followed by unobservable inputs or assumptions based on hypothetical transactions in the absence of market inputs.  We apply the following hierarchy in determining fair value:

 

·                  Level 1, defined as observable inputs being quoted prices in active markets for identical assets;

 

·                  Level 2, defined as observable inputs other than quoted prices included in Level 1, including quoted prices for similar assets and liabilities in active markets; quoted prices for identical or similar instruments in markets that are not active; and model-derived valuations in which significant inputs and significant value drivers are observable in active markets; and

 

·                  Level 3, defined as unobservable inputs for which little or no market data exists, consistent with reasonably available assumptions made by other participants therefore requiring assumptions based on the best information available.

 

10



Table of Contents

 

DISH NETWORK CORPORATION

NOTES TO CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS Continued

(Unaudited)

 

Our assets measured at fair value on a recurring basis were as follows:

 

 

 

As of

 

 

 

March 31, 2011

 

December 31, 2010

 

 

 

Total

 

Level 1

 

Level 2

 

Level 3

 

Total

 

Level 1

 

Level 2

 

Level 3

 

 

 

(In thousands)

 

Debt securities:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

VRDNs

 

$

1,165,177

 

$

 

$

1,165,177

 

$

 

$

1,334,081

 

$

 

$

1,334,081

 

$

 

ARS and MBS

 

123,191

 

 

5,622

 

117,569

 

119,121

 

 

6,031

 

113,090

 

Other (including restricted)

 

1,094,404

 

17,586

 

965,039

 

111,779

 

888,621

 

21,835

 

810,883

 

55,903

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Equity securities

 

182,669

 

182,669

 

 

 

195,022

 

195,022

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Subtotal

 

2,565,441

 

$

200,255

 

$

2,135,838

 

$

229,348

 

2,536,845

 

$

216,857

 

$

2,150,995

 

$

168,993

 

Less certain other investment securities

 

(111,645

)

 

 

 

 

 

 

(55,823

)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total marketable investment securities

 

$

2,453,796

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

$

2,481,022

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Changes in Level 3 instruments are as follows:

 

 

 

Level 3
Investment
Securities

 

 

 

(In thousands)

 

Balance as of December 31, 2010

 

$

168,993

 

Net realized and unrealized gains (losses) included in earnings

 

3,314

 

Net realized and unrealized gains (losses) included in other comprehensive income (loss)

 

57,803

 

Settlements

 

(762

)

Balance as of March 31, 2011

 

$

229,348

 

 

Gains and Losses on Sales and Changes in Carrying Values of Investments

 

“Other, net” income and expense included on our Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations and Comprehensive Income (Loss) includes other changes in the carrying amount of our marketable and non-marketable investments as follows:

 

 

 

For the Three Months

 

 

 

Ended March 31,

 

Other Income (Expense):

 

2011

 

2010

 

 

 

(In thousands)

 

Marketable investment securities - gains (losses) on sales/exchanges

 

$

6,391

 

$

(49

)

Marketable investment securities - unrealized gains (losses)

 

 

 

 

 

on investments accounted for at fair value

 

(4,773

)

 

Other investment securities - gains (losses) on sales/exchanges

 

10,000

 

1,552

 

Other investment securities - unrealized gains (losses) on fair value

 

 

 

 

 

investments and other-than-temporary impairments

 

 

3,024

 

Other

 

15

 

128

 

Total

 

$

11,633

 

$

4,655

 

 

11



Table of Contents

 

DISH NETWORK CORPORATION

NOTES TO CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS Continued

(Unaudited)

 

5.              Inventory

 

Inventory consists of the following:

 

 

 

As of

 

 

 

March 31,

 

December 31,

 

 

 

2011

 

2010

 

 

 

(In thousands)

 

Finished goods - DBS

 

$

301,402

 

$

305,068

 

Raw materials

 

87,426

 

143,111

 

Work-in-process - used

 

35,352

 

36,186

 

Work-in-process - new

 

3,519

 

3,210

 

Total inventory

 

$

427,699

 

$

487,575

 

 

6.              Property and Equipment

 

Depreciation and Amortization Expense

 

Depreciation and amortization expense consists of the following:

 

 

 

For the Three Months

 

 

 

Ended March 31,

 

 

 

2011

 

2010

 

 

 

(In thousands)

 

Equipment leased to customers

 

$

182,987

 

$

205,398

 

Satellites

 

32,091

 

22,183

 

Buildings, furniture, fixtures, equipment and other

 

14,619

 

12,081

 

Total depreciation and amortization

 

$

229,697

 

$

239,662

 

 

Cost of sales and operating expense categories included in our accompanying Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations and Comprehensive Income (Loss) do not include depreciation expense related to satellites or equipment leased to customers.

 

Satellites

 

We currently utilize 13 satellites in geostationary orbit approximately 22,300 miles above the equator, six of which we own.  We currently utilize capacity on five satellites from EchoStar, which are accounted for as operating leases.  See Note 10 for further discussion of our satellite leases with EchoStar.  We also lease two satellites from third parties, which are accounted for as capital leases and are depreciated over the shorter of the economic life or the term of the satellite agreement.

 

Operation of our programming service requires that we have adequate satellite transmission capacity for the programming we offer.  Moreover, current competitive conditions require that we continue to expand our offering of new programming, particularly by expanding local high definition (“HD”) coverage and offering more HD national channels.  While we generally have had in-orbit satellite capacity sufficient to transmit our existing channels and some backup capacity to recover the transmission of certain critical programming, our backup capacity is limited.

 

In the event of a failure or loss of any of our satellites, we may need to acquire or lease additional satellite capacity or relocate one of our other satellites and use it as a replacement for the failed or lost satellite.  Such a failure could result in a prolonged loss of critical programming or a significant delay in our plans to expand programming as

 

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(Unaudited)

 

necessary to remain competitive and thus may have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

 

Prior to 2011, certain satellites in our fleet experienced anomalies, some of which have had a significant adverse impact on their remaining useful life and/or commercial operation.  There can be no assurance that future anomalies will not further impact the remaining useful life and/or commercial operation of any of these satellites.  See “Long-Lived Satellite Assets” below for further discussion of evaluation of impairment.  There can be no assurance that we can recover critical transmission capacity in the event one or more of our in-orbit satellites were to fail.  We do not anticipate carrying insurance for any of the in-orbit satellites that we use, and we will bear the risk associated with any in-orbit satellite failures.  Recent developments with respect to certain of our satellites are discussed below.

 

Leased Satellites

 

EchoStar VIII.  EchoStar VIII was designed to operate 32 DBS transponders in the continental United States at approximately 120 watts per channel, switchable to 16 DBS transponders operating at approximately 240 watts per channel.  EchoStar VIII was also designed with spot-beam technology.  This satellite has experienced several anomalies prior to 2011 and during January 2011, the satellite experienced an anomaly, which temporarily disrupted electrical power to some components causing an interruption of broadcast service.  In addition, one of the two on board computers used to control the satellite failed in connection with this anomaly.  None of these anomalies has impacted the commercial operation or estimated useful life of the satellite.  However, there can be no assurance that this anomaly or any future anomalies will not reduce its useful life or impact its commercial operation.

 

Long-Lived Satellite Assets

 

We evaluate our satellite fleet for impairment as one asset group and test for recoverability whenever events or changes in circumstances indicate that its carrying amount may not be recoverable.  While certain of the anomalies discussed above, and previously disclosed, may be considered to represent a significant adverse change in the physical condition of an individual satellite, based on the redundancy designed within each satellite and considering the asset grouping, these anomalies are not considered to be significant events that would require evaluation for impairment recognition.  Unless and until a specific satellite is abandoned or otherwise determined to have no service potential, the net carrying amount related to the satellite would not be written off.

 

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7.     Long-Term Debt

 

Fair Value of our Long-Term Debt

 

The following table summarizes the carrying and fair values of our debt facilities as of March 31, 2011 and December 31, 2010:

 

 

 

As of

 

 

 

March 31, 2011

 

December 31, 2010

 

 

 

Carrying

 

 

 

Carrying

 

 

 

 

 

Value

 

Fair Value

 

Value

 

Fair Value

 

 

 

(In thousands)

 

6 3/8% Senior Notes due 2011 (1)

 

$

1,000,000

 

$

1,017,500

 

$

1,000,000

 

$

1,032,500

 

7 % Senior Notes due 2013

 

500,000

 

543,125

 

500,000

 

532,815

 

6 5/8% Senior Notes due 2014

 

1,000,000

 

1,057,560

 

1,000,000

 

1,032,500

 

7 3/4% Senior Notes due 2015

 

750,000

 

819,375

 

750,000

 

798,750

 

7 1/8% Senior Notes due 2016

 

1,500,000

 

1,597,500

 

1,500,000

 

1,548,600

 

7 7/8% Senior Notes due 2019

 

1,400,000

 

1,519,000

 

1,400,000

 

1,463,000

 

Mortgages and other notes payable

 

77,638

 

77,638

 

77,965

 

77,965

 

Subtotal

 

6,227,638

 

$

6,631,698

 

6,227,965

 

$

6,486,130

 

Capital lease obligations (2)

 

278,707

 

 

 

286,971

 

 

 

Total long-term debt and capital lease obligations (including current portion)

 

$

6,506,345

 

 

 

$

6,514,936

 

 

 

 


(1)   Our 6 3/8% Senior Notes with an aggregate principal balance of $1.0 billion mature on October 1, 2011.

(2)   Disclosure regarding fair value of capital leases is not required.

 

8.     Stock-Based Compensation

 

Stock Incentive Plans

 

We maintain stock incentive plans to attract and retain officers, directors and key employees.  Stock awards under these plans include both performance and non-performance based stock incentives.  As of March 31, 2011, we had outstanding under these plans stock options to acquire 22.1 million shares of our Class A common stock and 1.2 million restricted stock units.  Stock options granted prior to and on March 31, 2011 were granted with exercise prices equal to or greater than the market value of our Class A common stock at the date of grant and with a maximum term of approximately ten years.  While historically we have issued stock awards subject to vesting, typically at the rate of 20% per year, some stock awards have been granted with immediate vesting and other stock awards vest only upon the achievement of certain company-wide objectives.  As of March 31, 2011, we had 75.3 million shares of our Class A common stock available for future grant under our stock incentive plans.

 

During December 2009, we paid a dividend in cash of $2.00 per share on our outstanding Class A and Class B common stock to shareholders of record on November 20, 2009.  In light of such dividend, during February 2010, the exercise price of 20.6 million stock options, affecting approximately 700 employees, was reduced by $2.00 per share (the “Stock Option Adjustment”).  Except as noted below, all information discussed below reflects the Stock Option Adjustment.

 

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(Unaudited)

 

In connection with the Spin-off, as permitted by our existing stock incentive plans and consistent with the Spin-off exchange ratio, each DISH Network stock option was converted into two stock options as follows:

 

·      an adjusted DISH Network stock option for the same number of shares that were exercisable under the original DISH Network stock option, with an exercise price equal to the exercise price of the original DISH Network stock option multiplied by 0.831219.

 

·      a new EchoStar stock option for one-fifth of the number of shares that were exercisable under the original DISH Network stock option, with an exercise price equal to the exercise price of the original DISH Network stock option multiplied by 0.843907.

 

Similarly, each holder of DISH Network restricted stock units retained his or her DISH Network restricted stock units and received one EchoStar restricted stock unit for every five DISH Network restricted stock units that they held.

 

Consequently, the fair value of the DISH Network stock award and the new EchoStar stock award immediately following the Spin-off was equivalent to the fair value of such stock award immediately prior to the Spin-off.

 

As of March 31, 2011, the following stock awards were outstanding:

 

 

 

As of March 31, 2011

 

 

 

DISH Network Awards

 

EchoStar Awards

 

Stock Awards Outstanding

 

Stock
Options

 

Restricted
Stock
Units

 

Stock
Options

 

Restricted
Stock
Units

 

Held by DISH Network employees

 

18,806,172

 

933,746

 

946,546

 

58,484

 

Held by EchoStar employees

 

3,333,276

 

233,624

 

N/A

 

N/A

 

Total

 

22,139,448

 

1,167,370

 

946,546

 

58,484

 

 

We are responsible for fulfilling all stock awards related to DISH Network common stock and EchoStar is responsible for fulfilling all stock awards related to EchoStar common stock, regardless of whether such stock awards are held by our or EchoStar’s employees.  Notwithstanding the foregoing, our stock-based compensation expense, resulting from stock awards outstanding at the Spin-off date, is based on the stock awards held by our employees regardless of whether such stock awards were issued by DISH Network or EchoStar.  Accordingly, stock-based compensation that we expense with respect to EchoStar stock awards is included in “Additional paid-in capital” on our Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets.

 

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(Unaudited)

 

Stock Award Activity

 

Our stock option activity was as follows:

 

 

 

For the Three Months

 

 

 

Ended March 31, 2011

 

 

 

Options

 

Weighted-
Average
Exercise Price

 

Total options outstanding, beginning of period

 

21,918,500

 

$

18.62

 

Granted

 

890,000

 

$

24.36

 

Exercised

 

(220,252

)

$

14.36

 

Forfeited and cancelled

 

(448,800

)

$

17.10

 

Total options outstanding, end of period

 

22,139,448

 

$

18.84

 

Performance based options outstanding, end of period (1)

 

10,859,250

 

$

16.05

 

Exercisable at end of period

 

7,758,883

 

$

22.93

 

 


(1)   These stock options, which are included in the caption “Total options outstanding, end of period,” were issued pursuant to performance based stock incentive plans.  Vesting of these stock options is contingent upon meeting certain company goals which are not yet probable of being achieved.  See discussion of the 2005 LTIP, 2008 LTIP and other employee performance awards below.

 

We realized tax benefits from stock awards exercised during the three months ended March 31, 2011 and 2010 as follows:

 

 

 

For the Three Months

 

 

 

Ended March 31,

 

 

 

2011

 

2010

 

 

 

(In thousands)

 

Tax benefit from stock awards exercised

 

$

795

 

$

87

 

 

Based on the closing market price of our Class A common stock on March 31, 2011, the aggregate intrinsic value of our stock options was as follows:

 

 

 

As of March 31, 2011

 

 

 

Options
Outstanding

 

Options
Exercisable

 

 

 

(In thousands)

 

Aggregate intrinsic value

 

$

133,348

 

$

20,110

 

 

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(Unaudited)

 

Our restricted stock unit activity was as follows:

 

 

 

For the Three Months

 

 

 

Ended March 31, 2011

 

 

 

Restricted
Stock
Units

 

Weighted-
Average
Grant Date
Fair Value

 

Total restricted stock units outstanding, beginning of period

 

1,564,332

 

$

23.00

 

Granted

 

 

$

 

Vested

 

 

$

 

Forfeited and cancelled

 

(396,962

)

$

26.36

 

Total restricted stock units outstanding, end of period

 

1,167,370

 

$

21.86

 

Restricted Performance Units outstanding, end of period (1)

 

1,101,245

 

$

21.29

 

 


(1)   These Restricted Performance Units, which are included in the caption “Total restricted stock units outstanding, end of period,” were issued pursuant to performance based stock incentive plans.  Vesting of these Restricted Performance Units is contingent upon meeting certain company goals which are not yet probable of being achieved.  See discussion of the 2005 LTIP, 2008 LTIP and other employee performance awards below.

 

Long-Term Performance Based Plans

 

2005 LTIP.  During 2005, we adopted a long-term, performance based stock incentive plan (the “2005 LTIP”).  The 2005 LTIP provides stock options and restricted stock units, either alone or in combination, which vest over seven years at the rate of 10% per year during the first four years, and at the rate of 20% per year thereafter.  Exercise of the stock awards is subject to a performance condition that a company-specific subscriber goal is achieved by March 31, 2015.

 

Contingent compensation related to the 2005 LTIP will not be recorded in our financial statements unless and until management concludes achievement of the performance condition is probable.  Given the competitive nature of our business, small variations in subscriber churn, gross new subscriber addition rates and certain other factors can significantly impact subscriber growth.  Consequently, while it was determined that achievement of the goal was not probable as of March 31, 2011, that assessment could change at any time.

 

If all of the stock awards under the 2005 LTIP were vested and the goal had been met or if we had determined that achievement of the goal was probable during the three months ended March 31, 2011, we would have recorded total non-cash, stock-based compensation expense for our employees as indicated in the table below.  If the goal is met and there are unvested stock awards at that time, the vested amounts would be expensed immediately on our Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations and Comprehensive Income (Loss), with the unvested portion recognized ratably over the remaining vesting period.

 

 

 

2005 LTIP

 

 

 

Total

 

Vested
Portion

 

 

 

(In thousands)

 

DISH Network awards held by DISH Network employees

 

$

37,739

 

$

23,442

 

EchoStar awards held by DISH Network employees

 

7,388

 

4,580

 

Total

 

$

45,127

 

$

28,022

 

 

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(Unaudited)

 

2008 LTIP.  During 2008, we adopted a long-term, performance based stock incentive plan (the “2008 LTIP”).  The 2008 LTIP provides stock options and restricted stock units, either alone or in combination, which vest based on company-specific subscriber and financial goals.  Exercise of the stock awards is contingent on achieving these goals by December 31, 2015.

 

Although no awards vest until the company attains the performance goals, compensation related to the 2008 LTIP will be recorded based on management’s assessment of the probability of meeting the remaining goals.  If the remaining goals are probable of being achieved, we will begin recognizing the associated non-cash, stock-based compensation expense on our Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations and Comprehensive Income (Loss) over the estimated period to achieve the goal.  See table below titled “Estimated Remaining Non-Cash, Stock-Based Compensation Expense.”

 

During the first quarter of 2011, we determined that 100% of the 2008 LTIP performance goals are probable of achievement.  Although 100% of those goals are probable of achievement, only 25% of the vesting conditions have been met as of March 31, 2011.  As a result, we recorded non-cash, stock-based compensation expense for the three months ended March 31, 2011 and 2010, as indicated in the table below titled “Non-Cash, Stock-Based Compensation Expense Recognized.”

 

Other Employee Performance Awards.  In addition to the above long-term, performance stock incentive plans, we have other stock awards that vest based on certain other company-specific subscriber and financial goals.  Exercise of these stock awards is contingent on achieving certain performance goals.

 

Additional compensation related to these awards will be recorded based on management’s assessment of the probability of meeting the remaining performance goals.  If the remaining goals are probable of being achieved, we will begin recognizing the associated non-cash, stock-based compensation expense on our Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations and Comprehensive Income (Loss) over the estimated period to achieve the goal.  See table below titled “Estimated Remaining Non-Cash, Stock-Based Compensation Expense.”

 

Although no awards vest until the performance goals are attained, we determined that certain goals were probable of achievement and, as a result, recorded non-cash, stock-based compensation expense for the three months ended March 31, 2011 and 2010, as indicated in the table below titled “Non-Cash, Stock-Based Compensation Expense Recognized.”

 

Given the competitive nature of our business, small variations in subscriber churn, gross new subscriber addition rates and certain other factors can significantly impact subscriber growth.  Consequently, while it was determined that achievement of certain company-specific subscriber and financial goals was not probable as of March 31, 2011, that assessment could change at any time.

 

The non-cash stock-based compensation expense associated with these awards is as follows:

 

Estimated Remaining Non-Cash, Stock-Based Compensation Expense

 

2008 LTIP

 

Other
Employee
Performance
Awards

 

 

 

(In thousands)

 

Remaining expense estimated to be recognized during 2011

 

$

5,467

 

$

1,013

 

Estimated contingent expense subsequent to 2011

 

9,320

 

24,456

 

Total estimated remaining expense over the term of the plan

 

$

14,787

 

$

25,469

 

 

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(Unaudited)

 

 

 

For the Three Months

 

 

 

Ended March 31,

 

Non-Cash, Stock-Based Compensation Expense Recognized

 

2011

 

2010

 

 

 

(In thousands)

 

2008 LTIP

 

$

12,804

 

$

582

 

Other employee performance awards

 

75

 

309

 

Total non-cash, stock-based compensation expense recognized for performance based awards

 

$

12,879

 

$

891

 

 

Of the 22.1 million stock options and 1.2 million restricted stock units outstanding under our stock incentive plans as of March 31, 2011, the following awards were outstanding pursuant to our performance based stock incentive plans:

 

 

 

As of March 31, 2011

 

Performance Based Stock Options

 

Number of
Awards

 

Weighted-
Average
Exercise Price

 

2005 LTIP

 

3,444,000

 

$

22.98

 

2008 LTIP

 

5,415,250

 

$

10.76

 

Other employee performance awards

 

2,000,000

 

$

18.41

 

Total

 

10,859,250

 

$

16.05

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Restricted Performance Units and Other

 

 

 

 

 

2005 LTIP

 

459,995

 

 

 

2008 LTIP

 

41,250

 

 

 

Other employee performance awards

 

600,000

 

 

 

Total

 

1,101,245

 

 

 

 

Stock-Based Compensation

 

During the three months ended March 31, 2010, we incurred $3 million of additional non-cash, stock-based compensation cost in connection with the Stock Option Adjustment discussed previously.  This amount is included in the table below.  Total non-cash, stock-based compensation expense for all of our employees is shown in the following table for the three months ended March 31, 2011 and 2010 and was allocated to the same expense categories as the base compensation for such employees:

 

 

 

For the Three Months

 

 

 

Ended March 31,

 

 

 

2011

 

2010

 

 

 

(In thousands)

 

Subscriber-related

 

$

977

 

$

449

 

General and administrative

 

14,200

 

5,867

 

Total non-cash, stock-based compensation

 

$

15,177

 

$

6,316

 

 

As of March 31, 2011, our total unrecognized compensation cost related to our non-performance based unvested stock awards was $26 million and includes compensation expense that we will recognize for EchoStar stock awards held by our employees as a result of the Spin-off.  This cost is based on an estimated future forfeiture rate of approximately 4.0% per year and will be recognized over a weighted-average period of approximately three years.  Share-based compensation expense is recognized based on stock awards ultimately expected to vest and is reduced for estimated forfeitures.  Forfeitures are estimated at the time of grant and revised, if necessary, in subsequent periods if actual forfeitures differ from those estimates.  Changes in the estimated forfeiture rate can have a

 

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(Unaudited)

 

significant effect on share-based compensation expense since the effect of adjusting the rate is recognized in the period the forfeiture estimate is changed.

 

Valuation

 

The fair value of each stock option for the three months ended March 31, 2011 and 2010 was estimated at the date of the grant using a Black-Scholes option valuation model with the following assumptions:

 

 

 

For the Three Months

 

 

 

Ended March 31,

 

Stock Options

 

2011

 

2010

 

Risk-free interest rate

 

2.24% - 2.68%

 

2.89%

 

Volatility factor

 

35.82% - 39.59%

 

35.47%

 

Expected term of options in years

 

4.9 - 6.3

 

5.9

 

Weighted-average fair value of options granted

 

$9.16 - $9.81

 

$8.14

 

 

While we currently do not intend to declare additional dividends on our common stock, we may elect to do so from time to time.  Accordingly, the dividend yield percentage used in the Black-Scholes option valuation model is set at zero for all periods.  The Black-Scholes option valuation model was developed for use in estimating the fair value of traded stock options which have no vesting restrictions and are fully transferable.  Consequently, our estimate of fair value may differ from other valuation models.  Further, the Black-Scholes option valuation model requires the input of subjective assumptions.  Changes in the subjective input assumptions can materially affect the fair value estimate.

 

We will continue to evaluate the assumptions used to derive the estimated fair value of our stock options as new events or changes in circumstances become known.

 

9.     Commitments and Contingencies

 

Commitments

 

Guarantees

 

In connection with the Spin-off, we distributed certain satellite lease agreements to EchoStar and remained the guarantor under those capital leases for payments totaling approximately $272 million over approximately the next four years.

 

In addition, during the third quarter 2009, EchoStar entered into a new satellite transponder service agreement for Nimiq 5 through 2024.  We sublease this capacity from EchoStar and also guarantee a certain portion of its obligation under this agreement through 2019.  As of March 31, 2011, the remaining obligation under this agreement is the guarantee of $542 million.

 

As of March 31, 2011, we have not recorded a liability on the balance sheet for any of these guarantees.

 

Contingencies

 

In connection with the Spin-off, we entered into a separation agreement with EchoStar that provides, among other things, for the division of certain liabilities, including liabilities resulting from litigation.  Under the terms of the separation agreement, EchoStar has assumed certain liabilities that relate to its business including certain designated liabilities for acts or omissions prior to the Spin-off.  Certain specific provisions govern intellectual property related claims under which, generally, EchoStar will only be liable for its acts or omissions following the Spin-off and we

 

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(Unaudited)

 

will indemnify EchoStar for any liabilities or damages resulting from intellectual property claims relating to the period prior to the Spin-off as well as our acts or omissions following the Spin-off.

 

Broadcast Innovation, L.L.C.

 

During 2001, Broadcast Innovation, L.L.C. (“Broadcast Innovation”) filed a lawsuit against us, DirecTV, Thomson Consumer Electronics and others in United States District Court in Denver, Colorado.  Broadcast Innovation is an entity that seeks to license an acquired patent portfolio without itself practicing any of the claims recited therein.  The suit alleges infringement of United States Patent Nos. 6,076,094 (the ‘094 patent) and 4,992,066 (the ‘066 patent).  The ‘094 patent relates to certain methods and devices for transmitting and receiving data along with specific formatting information for the data.  The ‘066 patent relates to certain methods and devices for providing the scrambling circuitry for a pay television system on removable cards.  Subsequently, DirecTV and Thomson settled with Broadcast Innovation leaving us as the only defendant.

 

During 2004, the District Court issued an order finding the ‘066 patent invalid.  Also in 2004, the District Court found the ‘094 patent invalid in a parallel case filed by Broadcast Innovation against Charter and Comcast.  In 2005, the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit overturned that finding of invalidity with respect to the ‘094 patent and remanded the Charter case back to the District Court.  During June 2006, Charter filed a reexamination request with the United States Patent and Trademark Office.  The District Court has stayed the Charter case pending reexamination, and our case has been stayed pending resolution of the Charter case.

 

We intend to vigorously defend this case.  In the event that a court ultimately determines that we infringe any of the asserted patents, we may be subject to substantial damages, which may include treble damages, and/or an injunction that could require us to materially modify certain user-friendly features that we currently offer to consumers.  We cannot predict with any degree of certainty the outcome of the suit or determine the extent of any potential liability or damages.

 

Channel Bundling Class Action

 

During 2007, a purported class of cable and satellite subscribers filed an antitrust action against us in the United States District Court for the Central District of California.  The suit also names as defendants DirecTV, Comcast, Cablevision, Cox, Charter, Time Warner, Inc., Time Warner Cable, NBC Universal, Viacom, Fox Entertainment Group and Walt Disney Company.  The suit alleges, among other things, that the defendants engaged in a conspiracy to provide customers with access only to bundled channel offerings as opposed to giving customers the ability to purchase channels on an “a la carte” basis.  On October 16, 2009, the District Court granted defendants’ motion to dismiss with prejudice.  The plaintiffs have appealed.  We intend to vigorously defend this case.  We cannot predict with any degree of certainty the outcome of the suit or determine the extent of any potential liability or damages.

 

ESPN

 

During 2008, we filed a lawsuit against ESPN, Inc., ESPN Classic, Inc., ABC Cable Networks Group, Soapnet L.L.C. and International Family Entertainment (collectively, “ESPN”) for breach of contract in New York State Supreme Court.  Our complaint alleges that ESPN failed to provide us with certain high-definition feeds of the Disney Channel, ESPN News, Toon and ABC Family.  ESPN asserted a counterclaim, and then filed a motion for summary judgment, alleging that we owed approximately $35 million under the applicable affiliation agreements.  We brought a motion to amend our complaint to assert that ESPN was in breach of certain most-favored-nation provisions under the applicable affiliation agreements.  On April 15, 2009, the New York State Supreme Court granted our motion to amend the complaint, and granted, in part, ESPN’s motion on the counterclaim, finding that we are liable for some of the amount alleged to be owing but that the actual amount owing is disputed.  We appealed the partial grant of ESPN’s motion to the New York State Supreme Court, Appellate Division, First Department.  After the partial grant of ESPN’s motion, ESPN sought an additional $30 million under the applicable affiliation

 

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(Unaudited)

 

agreements.  On March 15, 2010, the New York State Supreme Court affirmed the prior grant of ESPN’s motion and ruled that we owe the full amount of approximately $65 million under the applicable affiliation agreement.  There can be no assurance that ESPN will not seek, and that the New York State Supreme Court, Appellate Division, First Department will not award a higher amount.  On December 29, 2010, the New York State Supreme Court, Appellate Division, First Department affirmed the partial grant of ESPN’s motion on the counterclaim.  However, it did not rule on the amount that we owe ESPN pursuant to its counterclaim.  The appellate court will determine this amount as part of a separate proceeding.  As of March 31, 2011 and December 31, 2010, we have $42 million recorded as a “Litigation accrual” on our Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets, which reflects our estimated exposure for ESPN’s counterclaim.  We intend to vigorously prosecute and defend this case.

 

Ganas L.L.C.

 

During August 2010, Ganas, L.L.C. (“Ganas”) filed suit against DISH DBS Corporation, our indirect wholly owned subsidiary, Sabre Holdings Corporation, SAP America, Inc., SAS Institute Inc., Scottrade, Inc., TD Ameritrade, Inc., The Charles Schwab Corporation, Tivo Inc., Unicoi Systems Inc., Xerox Corporation, Adobe Systems Inc., AOL Inc., Apple Inc., Axibase Corporation, DirecTV, E*Trade Securities L.L.C., Exinda Networks, Fidelity Brokerage Services L.L.C., Firstrade Securities Inc., Hewlett-Packard Company, iControl Inc., International Business Machines Corporation and JPMorgan Chase & Co. in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas alleging infringement of United States Patent Nos. 7,136,913, 7,325,053, and 7,734,756.  The patents relate to hypertext transfer protocol and simple object access protocol.  Ganas is an entity that seeks to license an acquired patent portfolio without itself practicing any of the claims recited therein.

 

We intend to vigorously defend this case.  In the event that a court ultimately determines that we infringe any of the asserted patents, we may be subject to substantial damages, which may include treble damages, and/or an injunction that could require us to materially modify certain features that we currently offer to consumers.  We cannot predict with any degree of certainty the outcome of the suit or determine the extent of any potential liability or damages.

 

Katz Communications

 

During 2007, Ronald A. Katz Technology Licensing, L.P. (“Katz”) filed a patent infringement action against us in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California.  The suit alleges infringement of 19 patents owned by Katz.  The patents relate to interactive voice response, or IVR, technology.  The case has been transferred and consolidated for pretrial purposes in the United States District Court for the Central District of California by order of the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation.

 

We intend to vigorously defend this case.  In the event that a court ultimately determines that we infringe any of the asserted patents, we may be subject to substantial damages, which may include treble damages and/or an injunction that could require us to materially modify certain user-friendly features that we currently offer to consumers.  We cannot predict with any degree of certainty the outcome of the suit or determine the extent of any potential liability or damages.

 

NorthPoint Technology

 

On July 2, 2009, NorthPoint Technology, Ltd. filed suit against us, EchoStar and DirecTV in the United States District Court for the Western District of Texas alleging infringement of United States Patent No. 6,208,636 (the ‘636 patent).  The ‘636 patent relates to the use of multiple low-noise block converter feedhorns, or LNBFs, which are antennas used for satellite reception.  On April 21, 2011, the US Patent and Trademark Office issued an order granting reexamination of the ‘636 patent.

 

We intend to vigorously defend this case.  In the event that a court ultimately determines that we infringe the asserted patent, we may be subject to substantial damages, which may include treble damages, and/or an injunction

 

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that could require us to materially modify certain features that we currently offer to consumers.  We cannot predict with any degree of certainty the outcome of the suit or determine the extent of any potential liability or damages.

 

Olympic Developments

 

On January 20, 2011, Olympic Developments AG, LLC (“Olympic”) filed suit against us, Atlantic Broadband, Inc., Bright House Networks, LLC, Cable One, Inc., Cequel Communications Holdings I, LLC, CSC Holdings, LLC, GCI Communication Corp., Insight Communications Company, Inc., Knology, Inc., Mediacom Communications Corporation and RCN Telecom Services, LLC in the United States District Court for the Central District of California alleging infringement of United States Patent Nos. 5,475,585 and 6,246,400.  The patents relate to on-demand services.  Olympic is an entity that seeks to license an acquired patent portfolio without itself practicing any of the claims recited therein.

 

We intend to vigorously defend this case.  In the event that a court ultimately determines that we infringe the asserted patents, we may be subject to substantial damages, which may include treble damages, and/or an injunction that could require us to materially modify certain features that we currently offer to consumers.  We cannot predict with any degree of certainty the outcome of the suit or determine the extent of any potential liability or damages.

 

Personalized Media Communications

 

During 2008, Personalized Media Communications, Inc. (“PMC”) filed suit against us, EchoStar and Motorola, Inc. in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas alleging infringement of United States Patent Nos. 4,694,490; 5,109,414; 4,965,825; 5,233,654; 5,335,277; and 5,887,243, which relate to satellite signal processing.  PMC is an entity that seeks to license an acquired patent portfolio without itself practicing any of the claims recited therein.

 

We intend to vigorously defend this case.  In the event that a court ultimately determines that we infringe any of the asserted patents, we may be subject to substantial damages, which may include treble damages, and/or an injunction that could require us to materially modify certain user-friendly features that we currently offer to consumers.  We cannot predict with any degree of certainty the outcome of the suit or determine the extent of any potential liability or damages.

 

Retailer Class Actions

 

During 2000, lawsuits were filed by retailers in Colorado state and federal courts attempting to certify nationwide classes on behalf of certain of our retailers.  The plaintiffs requested that the Courts declare certain provisions of, and changes to, alleged agreements between us and the retailers invalid and unenforceable, and to award damages for lost incentives and payments, charge backs and other compensation.  On September 20, 2010, we agreed to a settlement of both lawsuits that provides, among other things, for mutual releases of the claims underlying the litigation, payment by us of up to $60 million, and the option for certain class members to elect to reinstate certain monthly incentive payments, which the parties agreed have an aggregate maximum value of $23 million.  We cannot predict with any degree of certainty how many class members will elect to reinstate these monthly incentive payments.  As a result, we recorded $60 million as a “Litigation accrual” as of March 31, 2011 and December 31, 2010 on our Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets.  On February 9, 2011, the court granted final approval of the settlement, and $60 million was paid on April 28, 2011.

 

Suomen Colorize Oy

 

During October 2010, Suomen Colorize Oy (“Suomen”) filed suit against DISH Network L.L.C., our indirect wholly owned subsidiary, and EchoStar in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida alleging infringement of United States Patent No. 7,277,398.  Suomen is an entity that seeks to license an acquired patent

 

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portfolio without itself practicing any of the claims recited therein.  The abstract of the patent states that the claims are directed to a method and terminal for providing services in a telecommunication network.

 

We intend to vigorously defend this case.  In the event that a court ultimately determines that we infringe the asserted patent, we may be subject to substantial damages, which may include treble damages, and/or an injunction that could require us to materially modify certain features that we currently offer to consumers.  We cannot predict with any degree of certainty the outcome of the suit or determine the extent of any potential liability or damages.

 

Technology Development Licensing

 

On January 22, 2009, Technology Development and Licensing L.L.C. (“TDL”) filed suit against us and EchoStar in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois alleging infringement of United States Patent No. Re. 35,952, which relates to certain favorite channel features.  TDL is an entity that seeks to license an acquired patent portfolio without itself practicing any of the claims recited therein.  In July 2009, the Court granted our motion to stay the case pending two reexamination petitions before the Patent and Trademark Office.

 

We intend to vigorously defend this case.  In the event that a court ultimately determines that we infringe the asserted patent, we may be subject to substantial damages, which may include treble damages, and/or an injunction that could require us to materially modify certain user-friendly features that we currently offer to consumers.  We cannot predict with any degree of certainty the outcome of the suit or determine the extent of any potential liability or damages.

 

TiVo Inc.

 

On April 29, 2011, we and EchoStar entered into a settlement agreement with TiVo Inc.  See Note 11 for further discussion.

 

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Voom

 

In January 2008, Voom HD Holdings (“Voom”) filed a lawsuit against us in New York Supreme Court, alleging breach of contract and other claims arising from our termination of the affiliation agreement governing carriage of certain Voom HD channels on the DISH Network satellite TV service.  At that time, Voom also sought a preliminary injunction to prevent us from terminating the agreement.  The Court denied Voom’s request, finding, among other things, that Voom had not demonstrated that it was likely to prevail on the merits.  In April 2010, we and Voom each filed motions for summary judgment.  Voom later filed two motions seeking discovery sanctions.  On November 9, 2010, the Court issued a decision denying both motions for summary judgment, but granting Voom’s motions for discovery sanctions.  The Court’s decision provides for an adverse inference jury instruction at trial and precludes our damages expert from testifying at trial.  We appealed the grant of Voom’s motion for discovery sanctions to the New York State Supreme Court, Appellate Division, First Department.  On February 15, 2011, the appellate Court granted our motion to stay the trial pending our appeal.  Oral argument took place on April 27, 2011.  Voom is claiming over $2.5 billion in damages.  We intend to vigorously defend this case.  We cannot predict with any degree of certainty the outcome of the suit or determine the extent of any potential liability or damages.

 

Other

 

In addition to the above actions, we are subject to various other legal proceedings and claims which arise in the ordinary course of business, including, among other things, disputes with programmers regarding fees.  In our opinion, the amount of ultimate liability with respect to any of these actions is unlikely to materially affect our financial position, results of operations or liquidity.

 

10.       Related Party Transactions

 

Related Party Transactions with EchoStar

 

Following the Spin-off, EchoStar has operated as a separate public company, and we have no continued ownership interest in EchoStar.  However, a substantial majority of the voting power of the shares of both companies is owned beneficially by our Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, Charles W. Ergen or by certain trusts established by Mr. Ergen for the benefit of his family.

 

EchoStar is our primary supplier of set-top boxes and digital broadcast operations and our key supplier of transponder capacity.  Generally, the prices charged for products and services provided under the agreements entered into in connection with the Spin-off are based on pricing equal to EchoStar’s cost plus a fixed margin (unless noted differently below), which will vary depending on the nature of the products and services provided.

 

In connection with the Spin-off and subsequent to the Spin-off, we and EchoStar have entered into certain agreements pursuant to which we obtain certain products, services and rights from EchoStar, EchoStar obtains certain products, services and rights from us, and we and EchoStar have indemnified each other against certain liabilities arising from our respective businesses.  We also may enter into additional agreements with EchoStar in the future.  The following is a summary of the terms of the principal agreements that we have entered into with EchoStar that may have an impact on our financial position and results of operations.

 

“Equipment sales - EchoStar”

 

Remanufactured Receiver Agreement.  In connection with the Spin-off, we entered into a remanufactured receiver agreement with EchoStar pursuant to which EchoStar has the right, but not the obligation, to purchase remanufactured receivers and accessories from us at cost plus a fixed margin, which varies depending on the nature of the equipment purchased.  This agreement expires on January 1, 2012.  EchoStar may terminate the

 

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remanufactured receiver agreement for any reason upon at least 60 days notice to us.  We may also terminate this agreement if certain entities acquire us.

 

“Services and other revenue - EchoStar”

 

Professional Services Agreement. Prior to 2010, in connection with the Spin-off, we entered into various agreements with EchoStar including the Transition Services Agreement, Satellite Procurement Agreement and Services Agreement, which all expired on January 1, 2010 and were replaced by the Professional Services Agreement.  During 2009, we and EchoStar agreed that EchoStar shall continue to have the right, but not the obligation, to receive from us the following services, among others: information technology, travel and event coordination, internal audit, legal, accounting and tax, benefits administration, program management and other support services.  Additionally, we and EchoStar agreed that we shall continue to have the right, but not the obligation, to engage EchoStar to manage the process of procuring new satellite capacity for DISH Network and receive logistics, procurement and quality assurance services from EchoStar.  The professional services agreement expires on January 1, 2012, but renews automatically for successive one-year periods thereafter, unless terminated earlier by either party upon at least 60 days notice.  However, either party may terminate the services it receives with respect to a particular service for any reason upon at least 30 days notice.

 

Management Services Agreement.  In connection with the Spin-off, we entered into a management services agreement with EchoStar pursuant to which we make certain of our officers available to provide services (which are primarily legal and accounting services) to EchoStar.  Specifically, R. Stanton Dodge and Paul W. Orban remain employed by us, but also serve as EchoStar’s Executive Vice President and General Counsel, and Senior Vice President and Controller, respectively.  EchoStar makes payments to us based upon an allocable portion of the personnel costs and expenses incurred by us with respect to such officers (taking into account wages and fringe benefits).  These allocations are based upon the estimated percentages of time to be spent by our executive officers performing services for EchoStar under the management services agreement.  EchoStar also reimburses us for direct out-of-pocket costs incurred by us for management services provided to EchoStar.  We and EchoStar evaluate all charges for reasonableness at least annually and make any adjustments to these charges as we and EchoStar mutually agree upon.

 

The management services agreement automatically renewed on January 1, 2011 for an additional one-year period until January 1, 2012 and renews automatically for successive one-year periods thereafter, unless terminated earlier: (i) by EchoStar at any time upon at least 30 days prior notice; (ii) by us at the end of any renewal term, upon at least 180 days notice; or (iii) by us upon notice to EchoStar, following certain changes in control.

 

Satellite Capacity Leased to EchoStar.  During 2009, we entered into a satellite capacity agreement pursuant to which EchoStar leases certain satellite capacity from us on EchoStar I.  The fee for the services provided under this satellite capacity agreement depends, among other things, upon the orbital location of the satellite and the length of the lease.  The lease generally terminates upon the earlier of:  (i) the end of life or replacement of the satellite (unless EchoStar determines to renew on a year-to-year basis); (ii) the date the satellite fails; (iii) the date the transponder on which service is being provided fails; or (iv) a certain date, which depends, among other things, upon the estimated useful life of the satellite, whether the replacement satellite fails at launch or in orbit prior to being placed into service, and the exercise of certain renewal options.  EchoStar generally has the option to renew this lease on a year-to-year basis through the end of the satellite’s life.  There can be no assurance that any options to renew this agreement will be exercised.

 

Real Estate Lease Agreement.  During 2008, we entered into a sublease for space at 185 Varick Street, New York, New York to EchoStar for a period of approximately seven years.  The rent on a per square foot basis for this sublease was comparable to per square foot rental rates of similar commercial property in the same geographic area at the time of the sublease, and EchoStar is responsible for its portion of the taxes, insurance, utilities and maintenance of the premises.

 

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“Satellite and transmission expenses — EchoStar”

 

Broadcast Agreement.  In connection with the Spin-off, we entered into a broadcast agreement pursuant to which EchoStar provides certain broadcast services to us, including teleport services such as transmission and downlinking, channel origination services, and channel management services for a period ending on January 1, 2012.  We may terminate channel origination services and channel management services for any reason and without any liability upon at least 60 days notice to EchoStar.  If we terminate teleport services for a reason other than EchoStar’s breach, we are obligated to pay EchoStar the aggregate amount of the remainder of the expected cost of providing the teleport services.  The fees for services provided under the broadcast agreement are calculated at cost plus a fixed margin, which varies depending on the nature of the products and services provided.

 

Broadcast Agreement for Certain Sports Related Programming.  During May 2010, we entered into a broadcast agreement pursuant to which EchoStar provides certain broadcast services to us in connection with our carriage of certain sports related programming.  The term of this agreement is for ten years.  If we terminate this agreement for a reason other than EchoStar’s breach, we are generally obligated to reimburse EchoStar for any direct costs EchoStar incurs related to any such termination that it cannot reasonably mitigate.  The fees for the broadcast services provided under this agreement depend, among other things, upon the cost to develop and provide such services.

 

Satellite Capacity Leased from EchoStar.  In connection with the Spin-off and subsequent to the Spin-off, we entered into certain satellite capacity agreements pursuant to which we lease certain satellite capacity on certain satellites owned or leased by EchoStar.  The fees for the services provided under these satellite capacity agreements depend, among other things, upon the orbital location of the applicable satellite and the length of the lease.  The term of each of the leases is set forth below:

 

EchoStar III, VI, VIII and XII.  We lease certain satellite capacity from EchoStar on EchoStar VI, VIII and XII.  The leases generally terminate upon the earlier of:  (i) the end of life or replacement of the satellite (unless we determine to renew on a year-to-year basis); (ii) the date the satellite fails; (iii) the date the transponder on which service is being provided fails; or (iv) a certain date, which depends upon, among other things, the estimated useful life of the satellite, whether the replacement satellite fails at launch or in orbit prior to being placed into service and the exercise of certain renewal options.  We generally have the option to renew each lease on a year-to-year basis through the end of the respective satellite’s life.  There can be no assurance that any options to renew such agreements will be exercised.  In August 2010, our lease of EchoStar III terminated when it was replaced by EchoStar XV.

 

EchoStar IX.  We lease certain satellite capacity from EchoStar on EchoStar IX.  Subject to availability, we generally have the right to continue to lease satellite capacity from EchoStar on EchoStar IX on a month-to-month basis.

 

EchoStar XVI.  We will lease certain satellite capacity from EchoStar on EchoStar XVI after its service commencement date and this lease generally terminates upon the earlier of:  (i) the end of life or replacement of the satellite; (ii) the date the satellite fails; (iii) the date the transponder(s) on which service is being provided under the agreement fails; or (iv) ten years following the actual service commencement date.  Upon expiration of the initial term, we have the option to renew on a year-to-year basis through the end of life of the satellite.  There can be no assurance that any options to renew this agreement will be exercised.  EchoStar XVI is expected to be launched during the second half of 2012.

 

EchoStar XV.  EchoStar XV is owned by us and is operated at the 61.5 degree orbital location.  The FCC has granted EchoStar an authorization to operate the satellite at the 61.5 degree orbital location.  For so long as EchoStar XV remains in service at the 61.5 degree orbital location, we are obligated to pay EchoStar a fee, which varies depending on the number of frequencies being used by EchoStar XV.

 

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Nimiq 5 Agreement.  During 2009, EchoStar entered into a fifteen-year satellite service agreement with Telesat Canada (“Telesat”) to receive service on all 32 DBS transponders on the Nimiq 5 satellite at the 72.7 degree orbital location (the “Telesat Transponder Agreement”).  During 2009, EchoStar also entered into a satellite service agreement (the “DISH Telesat Agreement”) with us, pursuant to which we will receive service from EchoStar on all 32 of the DBS transponders covered by the Telesat Transponder Agreement.  We and EchoStar are currently receiving service on 24 of these DBS transponders and will receive service on the remaining eight DBS transponders over a phase-in period that will be completed in 2012.  We have also guaranteed certain obligations of EchoStar under the Telesat Transponder Agreement.  See discussions under “Guarantees” in Note 9.

 

Under the terms of the DISH Telesat Agreement, we make certain monthly payments to EchoStar that commenced in 2009 when the Nimiq 5 satellite was placed into service and continue through the service term.  Unless earlier terminated under the terms and conditions of the DISH Telesat Agreement, the service term will expire ten years following the date it was placed into service.  Upon expiration of the initial term we have the option to renew the DISH Telesat Agreement on a year-to-year basis through the end of life of the Nimiq 5 satellite.  Upon in-orbit failure or end of life of the Nimiq 5 satellite, and in certain other circumstances, we have certain rights to receive service from EchoStar on a replacement satellite.  There can be no assurance that any options to renew this agreement will be exercised or that we will exercise our option to receive service on a replacement satellite.

 

QuetzSat-1 Lease Agreement.  During 2008, EchoStar entered into a ten-year satellite service agreement with SES Latin America S.A. (“SES”), which provides, among other things, for the provision by SES to EchoStar of service on 32 DBS transponders on the QuetzSat-1 satellite expected to be placed into service at the 77 degree orbital location during the second half of 2011.  During 2008, EchoStar also entered into a transponder service agreement (“QuetzSat-1 Transponder Agreement”) with us pursuant to which we will receive service from EchoStar on 24 of the DBS transponders.

 

Under the terms of the QuetzSat-1 Transponder Agreement, we will make certain monthly payments to EchoStar commencing when the QuetzSat-1 satellite is placed into service and continuing through the service term.  Unless earlier terminated under the terms and conditions of the QuetzSat-1 Transponder Agreement, the service term will expire ten years following the actual service commencement date.  Upon expiration of the initial term, we have the option to renew the QuetzSat-1 Transponder Agreement on a year-to-year basis through the end of life of the QuetzSat-1 satellite.  Upon a launch failure, in-orbit failure or end of life of the QuetzSat-1 satellite, and in certain other circumstances, we have certain rights to receive service from EchoStar on a replacement satellite.  There can be no assurance that any options to renew this agreement will be exercised or that we will exercise our option to receive service on a replacement satellite.

 

TT&C Agreement.  In connection with the Spin-off, we entered into a telemetry, tracking and control (“TT&C”) agreement pursuant to which we receive TT&C services from EchoStar for a period ending on January 1, 2012.  The fees for services provided under the TT&C agreement are calculated at cost plus a fixed margin.  We may terminate the TT&C agreement for any reason upon at least 60 days notice.

 

“Cost of sales — subscriber promotion subsidies — EchoStar”

 

Receiver Agreement.  EchoStar is currently our sole supplier of set-top box receivers.  The table below indicates the dollar value of set-top boxes and other equipment that we purchased from EchoStar as well as the amount of purchases that are included in “Cost of sales — subscriber promotion subsidies — EchoStar” on our Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations and Comprehensive Income (Loss).  The remaining amount is included in “Inventory” and “Property and equipment, net” on our Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets.

 

 

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For the Three Months

 

 

 

Ended March 31,

 

 

 

2011

 

2010

 

 

 

(In thousands)

 

Set-top boxes and other equipment purchased from EchoStar

 

$

272,126

 

$

385,848

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Set-top boxes and other equipment purchased from EchoStar included in “Cost of sales — subscriber promotion subsidies — EchoStar”

 

$

54,426

 

$

26,903

 

 

In connection with the Spin-off, we entered into a receiver agreement pursuant to which we have the right, but not the obligation, to purchase digital set-top boxes and related accessories, and other equipment from EchoStar for a period ending on January 1, 2012.  The receiver agreement allows us to purchase digital set-top boxes, related accessories and other equipment from EchoStar at cost plus a fixed margin, which varies depending on the nature of the equipment purchased.  Additionally, EchoStar provides us with standard manufacturer warranties for the goods sold under the receiver agreement.  We may terminate the receiver agreement for any reason upon at least 60 days notice to EchoStar.  EchoStar may terminate the receiver agreement if certain entities were to acquire us.  The receiver agreement also includes an indemnification provision, whereby the parties indemnify each other for certain intellectual property matters.

 

“General and administrative expenses — EchoStar”

 

Product Support Agreement.  In connection with the Spin-off, we entered into a product support agreement pursuant to which we have the right, but not the obligation, to receive product support from EchoStar (including certain engineering and technical support services) for all set-top boxes and related accessories that EchoStar has previously sold and in the future may sell to us.  The fees for the services provided under the product support agreement are calculated at cost plus a fixed margin, which varies depending on the nature of the services provided.  The term of the product support agreement is the economic life of such receivers and related accessories, unless terminated earlier.  We may terminate the product support agreement for any reason upon at least 60 days notice.  In the event of an early termination of this agreement, we are entitled to a refund of any unearned fees paid to EchoStar for the services.

 

Real Estate Lease Agreements.  We have entered into lease agreements pursuant to which we lease certain real estate from EchoStar.  The rent on a per square foot basis for each of the leases is comparable to per square foot rental rates of similar commercial property in the same geographic area, and EchoStar is responsible for its portion of the taxes, insurance, utilities and maintenance of the premises.  The term of each of the leases is set forth below:

 

·                  Inverness Lease Agreement.  The lease for certain space at 90 Inverness Circle East in Englewood, Colorado expires on January 1, 2012.

 

·                  Meridian Lease Agreement.  The lease for all of 9601 S. Meridian Blvd. in Englewood, Colorado is for a period ending on January 1, 2012 with a renewal option for one additional year.

 

·                  Santa Fe Lease Agreement.  The lease for all of 5701 S. Santa Fe Dr. in Littleton, Colorado is for a period ending on January 1, 2012 with a renewal option for one additional year.

 

·                  EDN Sublease Agreement.  The sublease for certain space at 211 Perimeter Center in Atlanta, Georgia is for a period ending on October 31, 2016.

 

·                  Gilbert Lease Agreement.  The lease for certain space at 801 N. DISH Dr. in Gilbert, Arizona is a month to month lease and can be terminated by either party upon 30 days prior notice.

 

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DISHOnline.com Services Agreement.  Effective January 1, 2010, we entered into a two-year agreement with EchoStar pursuant to which we will receive certain services associated with an online video portal.  The fees for the services provided under this services agreement depend, among other things, upon the cost to develop and operate such services.  We have the option to renew this agreement for three successive one year terms and the agreement may be terminated for any reason upon at least 120 days notice to EchoStar.

 

DISH Remote Access Services Agreement.  Effective February 23, 2010, we entered into an agreement with EchoStar pursuant to which we will receive, among other things, certain remote DVR management services.  The fees for the services provided under this services agreement depend, among other things, upon the cost to develop and operate such services.  This agreement has a term of five years with automatic renewal for successive one year terms and may be terminated for any reason upon at least 120 days notice to EchoStar.

 

SlingService Services Agreement.  Effective February 23, 2010, we entered into an agreement with EchoStar pursuant to which we will receive certain place-shifting services.  The fees for the services provided under this services agreement depend, among other things, upon the cost to develop and operate such services.  This agreement has a term of five years with automatic renewal for successive one year terms and may be terminated for any reason upon at least 120 days notice to EchoStar.

 

Other Agreements — EchoStar

 

Tax Sharing Agreement.  In connection with the Spin-off, we entered into a tax sharing agreement with EchoStar which governs our respective rights, responsibilities and obligations after the Spin-off with respect to taxes for the periods ending on or before the Spin-off.  Generally, all pre-Spin-off taxes, including any taxes that are incurred as a result of restructuring activities undertaken to implement the Spin-off, are borne by us, and we will indemnify EchoStar for such taxes.  However, we are not liable for and will not indemnify EchoStar for any taxes that are incurred as a result of the Spin-off or certain related transactions failing to qualify as tax-free distributions pursuant to any provision of Section 355 or Section 361 of the Code because of: (i) a direct or indirect acquisition of any of EchoStar’s stock, stock options or assets; (ii) any action that EchoStar takes or fails to take; or (iii) any action that EchoStar takes that is inconsistent with the information and representations furnished to the IRS in connection with the request for the private letter ruling, or to counsel in connection with any opinion being delivered by counsel with respect to the Spin-off or certain related transactions.  In such case, EchoStar is solely liable for, and will indemnify us for, any resulting taxes, as well as any losses, claims and expenses.  The tax sharing agreement will only terminate after the later of the full period of all applicable statutes of limitations, including extensions, or once all rights and obligations are fully effectuated or performed.

 

TiVo.  On April 29, 2011, we and EchoStar entered into a settlement agreement with TiVo Inc.  See Note 11 for further discussion.

 

EchoStar XV Launch Service.  During 2009, EchoStar assigned certain of its rights under a launch contract to us for EchoStar’s fair value of $103 million.  This amount was paid to EchoStar during the first quarter of 2010.  We recorded these rights at EchoStar’s net book value of $89 million and recorded the $14 million difference between EchoStar’s net book value and our purchase price as a capital transaction with EchoStar.  We used these rights to launch EchoStar XV in July 2010.

 

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Weather Related Programming Agreement.  During May 2010, we entered into an agreement pursuant to which, among other things, EchoStar agreed to develop certain weather related programming and we received the right to distribute such programming.  This agreement was terminated during June 2010.  In July 2010, we purchased EchoStar’s interest in the entity that held such weather related programming for $5 million.

 

International Programming Rights Agreement.  During the three months ended March 31, 2011 and 2010, we purchased approximately zero and $2 million, respectively, of certain international rights for sporting events from EchoStar, included in “Subscriber-related expenses” on the Condensed Consolidated Statements of Operations and Comprehensive Income (Loss), of which EchoStar only retained a certain portion.

 

Acquisition of South.com, L.L.C.  During October 2010, we purchased all of South.com, L.L.C. from EchoStar and another party for $5 million.  South.com, L.L.C. is an entity that holds certain authorizations for multichannel video and data distribution service (MVDDS) spectrum in the United States.

 

Other Agreements

 

In November 2009, Mr. Roger Lynch became employed by both us and EchoStar as Executive Vice President.  Mr. Lynch is responsible for the development and implementation of advanced technologies that are of potential utility and importance to both us and EchoStar.  Mr. Lynch’s compensation consists of cash and equity compensation and is borne by both EchoStar and us.

 

Related Party Transactions with NagraStar L.L.C.

 

Prior to the Spin-off, we owned 50% of NagraStar L.L.C. (“NagraStar”), which was contributed to EchoStar in connection with the Spin-off.  NagraStar is a joint venture between EchoStar and Nagra USA, Inc. that is our provider of encryption and related security systems intended to assure that only paying customers have access to our programming.

 

The table below summarizes our transactions with NagraStar.

 

 

 

For the Three Months

 

 

 

Ended March 31,

 

 

 

2011

 

2010

 

 

 

(In thousands)

 

Purchases (including fees):

 

 

 

 

 

Purchases from NagraStar

 

$

20,729

 

$

20,073

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As of

 

 

 

March 31,

 

December 31,

 

 

 

2011

 

2010

 

 

 

(In thousands)

 

Amounts Payable and Commitments:

 

 

 

 

 

Amounts payable to NagraStar

 

$

7,012

 

$

13,272

 

Commitments to purchase from NagraStar

 

$

13

 

$

 

 

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DISH NETWORK CORPORATION

NOTES TO CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS Continued

(Unaudited)

 

11.       Subsequent Events

 

Blockbuster

 

On April 6, 2011, we were selected as the winning bidder in the bankruptcy court auction for substantially all of the assets of Blockbuster, Inc.  Our winning bid was valued at approximately $320 million.  On April 26, 2011 we completed the acquisition of Blockbuster.  After making certain adjustments at closing of the transaction, including adjustments for available cash and inventory, we paid approximately $226 million in cash to acquire Blockbuster.  As of March 31, 2011, we had paid a $28 million bid deposit which is included in “Other current assets” on the Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets.

 

TiVo Inc.

 

In connection with our litigation with TiVo Inc. (“TiVo”), which is described in our periodic reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including in our annual report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2010 under the caption “Item 3.  Legal Proceedings — TiVo Inc.,” on April 20, 2011, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit vacated the District Court’s contempt ruling on infringement, articulated a new standard for determining “colorable difference” and remanded that issue back to the District Court for determination.  The Federal Circuit also vacated the District Court’s amended injunction requiring that we inform the court of any further attempts to design around TiVo’s United States Patent No. 6,233,389 (the ‘389 patent) and seek approval from the court before any such design-around is implemented.  The Federal Circuit also vacated the infringement damages for the period after we deployed our original alternative technology (although it did not foreclose that damages may be reinstated if upon remand a new court or jury decision found that the original alternative technology infringed TiVo’s ‘389 patent).  The Federal Circuit affirmed the District Court’s contempt ruling on disablement, holding that the original 2006 injunction required that we disable DVR functionality in all but approximately 192,000 digital set-top boxes deployed with customers (the “Disablement Provision”) and affirmed the $90 million in contempt sanctions awarded against us for violating the Disablement Provision.

 

On April 29, 2011, we and EchoStar entered into a settlement agreement with TiVo.  The settlement resolves all pending litigation between us and EchoStar, on the one hand, and TiVo, on the other hand, including litigation relating to alleged patent infringement involving certain DISH Network digital video recorders, or DVRs, which litigation is described in our periodic reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission including in our annual report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2010 under the caption “Item 3.  Legal Proceedings — TiVo Inc.”

 

Under the settlement agreement, all pending litigation will be dismissed with prejudice and all injunctions that permanently restrain, enjoin or compel any action by us or EchoStar will be dissolved.  We and EchoStar are jointly responsible for making payments to TiVo in the aggregate amount of $500 million, including an initial payment of $300 million and the remaining $200 million in six equal annual installments between 2012 and 2017.  Pursuant to the terms and conditions of the agreements entered into in connection with the Spin-off of EchoStar from us, we will be responsible for the initial payment to TiVo, except for a contribution from EchoStar totaling approximately $10 million, representing an allocation of liability relating to EchoStar’s sales of DVR-enabled receivers to an international customer.  Future payments will be allocated between us and EchoStar based on historical sales of certain licensed products, with us being responsible for approximately 95% of each annual payment.

 

As previously disclosed, our total litigation accrual for TiVo was $517 million as of December 31, 2010.  As a result of the settlement agreement, as of March 31, 2011, we reversed $335 million of this accrual and we will make a payment of approximately $290 million for our portion of the initial payment to TiVo.  Of this amount, approximately $182 million relates to prior periods and the remaining $108 million represents a prepayment.  Our $108 million prepayment and our $190 million share of the remaining payments, a total of $298 million, will be expensed ratably as a subscriber-related expense from April 1, 2011 through July 31, 2018, the expiration date of the ‘389 patent.

 

In addition, under the settlement agreement, TiVo granted us a license under its ‘389 patent and certain related patents, for the remaining life of those patents, with respect to DISH-branded and co-branded products and services.

 

We and EchoStar, on the one hand, and TiVo, on the other hand, have also agreed on mutual releases of certain related claims and agreed not to challenge each other’s DVR technology-related patents that are licensed under the settlement agreement.

 

Because both we and EchoStar were defendants in the TiVo lawsuit, we and EchoStar were jointly and severally liable to TiVo for any final damages and sanctions that could have been awarded by the District Court.  As previously disclosed, we determined that we were obligated under the agreements entered into in connection with the Spin-off to indemnify EchoStar for substantially all liability arising from this lawsuit.  EchoStar contributed an amount equal to its $5 million intellectual property liability limit under the Receiver Agreement.  We and EchoStar further agreed that EchoStar’s $5 million contribution would not exhaust EchoStar’s liability to us for other intellectual property claims that may arise under the Receiver Agreement.  We and EchoStar also agreed that we would each be entitled to joint ownership of, and a cross-license to use, any intellectual property developed in connection with any potential new alternative technology.  Any amounts that EchoStar is responsible for under the settlement agreement with TiVo are in addition to the $5 million contribution previously made by EchoStar.

 

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Item 2.

MANAGEMENT’S DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS OF FINANCIAL CONDITION AND RESULTS OF OPERATIONS

 

You should read the following discussion and analysis of our financial condition and results of operations together with the condensed consolidated financial statements and notes to the financial statements included elsewhere in this quarterly report.  This management’s discussion and analysis is intended to help provide an understanding of our financial condition, changes in financial condition and results of our operations and contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties.  The forward-looking statements are not historical facts, but rather are based on current expectations, estimates, assumptions and projections about our industry, business and future financial results.  Our actual results could differ materially from the results contemplated by these forward-looking statements due to a number of factors, including those discussed in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2010 and this Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q under the caption “Item 1A.  Risk Factors.”

 

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

 

Overview

 

DISH Network added approximately 58,000 net new subscribers during the three months ended March 31, 2011, compared to approximately 237,000 net new subscribers during the same period in 2010.  This decrease primarily resulted from a decline in gross new subscriber activations and increased churn.

 

During the three months ended March 31, 2011, DISH Network added approximately 681,000 gross new subscribers compared to approximately 833,000 gross new subscribers during the same period in 2010, a decrease of 18.2%.  Our gross activations in 2011 were negatively impacted relative to 2010 by increased competitive pressures, including aggressive marketing and the effectiveness of certain competitors’ promotional offers, which included an increased level of discounts.  In addition, our gross activations in 2011 continue to be adversely affected by sustained economic weakness and uncertainty, including, among other things, the weak housing market in the United States combined with lower discretionary spending.

 

Our average monthly subscriber churn rate for the three months ended March 31, 2011 was 1.47%, compared to 1.40% for the same period in 2010.  Generally, we experience lower churn during the first quarter of each year.  In general, our churn rate is impacted by the quality of subscribers acquired in past quarters, our ability to provide outstanding customer service, and our ability to control piracy.  There can be no assurance that churn will continue at this rate during the remainder of 2011.

 

Net income for the three months ended March 31, 2011 was $549 million, compared to $231 million for the same period in 2010.  Net income improved primarily due to a reduction in our accrued expenses related to the TiVo Inc. settlement, price increases during the past year and fewer gross new subscriber activations this quarter.

 

Programming costs represent a large percentage of our “Subscriber-related expenses.”  Going forward, our margins may face pressure if we are unable to renew our long-term programming contracts on favorable pricing and other economic terms.  Additionally, our gross new subscriber additions and subscriber churn rate may be negatively impacted if we are unable to renew our long-term programming contracts before they expire.

 

As the pay-TV industry matures, we and our competitors increasingly must seek to attract a greater proportion of new subscribers from each other’s existing subscriber bases rather than from first-time purchasers of pay-TV services.  Some of our competitors have been especially aggressive by offering discounted programming and services for both new and existing subscribers.  In addition, programming offered over the Internet has become more prevalent as the speed and quality of broadband networks have improved.  Significant changes in consumer behavior with regard to the means by which they obtain video entertainment and information in response to digital media competition could materially adversely affect our business, results of operations and financial condition or otherwise disrupt our business.

 

While economic factors have impacted the entire pay-TV industry, our relative performance has also been driven by issues specific to DISH Network.  In the past, our subscriber growth has been adversely affected by signal theft and other forms of fraud and by operational inefficiencies at DISH Network.

 

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Item 2.

MANAGEMENT’S DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS OF FINANCIAL CONDITION AND RESULTS OF OPERATIONS - Continued

 

To combat signal theft and improve the security of our broadcast system, we completed the replacement of our security access devices to re-secure our system during 2009.  We expect that additional future replacements of these devices will be necessary to keep our system secure.  To combat other forms of fraud, we continue to monitor our third party distributors to ensure adherence to our business rules.

 

While we have made improvements in responding to and dealing with customer service issues, we continue to focus on the prevention of these issues, which is critical to our business, financial position and results of operations.  To address our operational inefficiencies, we continue to focus on simplifying and standardizing our operations.  For example, we have streamlined our hardware offerings and continue to make significant investments in staffing, training, information systems, and other initiatives, primarily in our call center and in-home service operations.  These investments are intended to help combat inefficiencies introduced by the increasing complexity of our business, improve customer satisfaction, reduce churn, increase productivity and allow us to scale better over the long run.  We cannot, however, be certain that our increased spending will ultimately be successful in yielding such returns.

 

We have been investing more in advanced technology equipment as part of our subscriber acquisition and retention efforts.  Initiatives to transmit certain programming only in MPEG-4 and to activate most new subscribers only with MPEG-4 receivers have accelerated our deployment of MPEG-4 receivers.  To meet current demand, we have increased the rate at which we upgrade existing subscribers to HD and DVR receivers.  While these efforts may increase our subscriber acquisition and retention costs, we believe that they will help mitigate subscriber churn in the future and reduce costs over the long run.

 

We are also continuing to change equipment for certain subscribers to make more efficient use of transponder capacity in support of HD and other initiatives.  We expect to continue these initiatives through 2011.  We believe that the benefit from the increase in available transponder capacity outweighs the short-term cost of these equipment changes.

 

To maintain and enhance our competitiveness over the long term, we are promoting a suite of integrated products designed to maximize the convenience and ease of watching TV anytime and anywhere, referred to as “TV Everywhere.”  TV Everywhere utilizes, among other things, online access and Slingbox “placeshifting” technology.  There can be no assurance that these integrated products will positively affect our results of operations or our gross new subscriber additions.

 

Recent Developments

 

In connection with our litigation with TiVo Inc. (“TiVo”), which is described in our periodic reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including in our annual report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2010 under the caption “Item 3.  Legal Proceedings — TiVo Inc.,” on April 20, 2011, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit vacated the District Court’s contempt ruling on infringement, articulated a new standard for determining “colorable difference” and remanded that issue back to the District Court for determination.  The Federal Circuit also vacated the District Court’s amended injunction requiring that we inform the court of any further attempts to design around TiVo’s United States Patent No. 6,233,389 (the ‘389 patent) and seek approval from the court before any such design-around is implemented.  The Federal Circuit also vacated the infringement damages for the period after we deployed our original alternative technology (although it did not foreclose that damages may be reinstated if upon remand a new court or jury decision found that the original alternative technology infringed TiVo’s ‘389 patent).  The Federal Circuit affirmed the District C