Dish Network loses 134K subs in Q1, blames carriage disputes

Blackouts associated with carriage disputes continued to take a toll on Dish Network (NASDAQ: DISH) in the first quarter, with the satellite operator losing 134,000 customers to start the year.

The dismal Q1 subscriber performance follows a Q4 during which Dish lost 63,000 customers. The company added 40,000 subscribers in the first quarter of 2014.

In a regulatory filing Monday with the SEC, Dish blamed the loss on lengthy impasses that kept Fox News and Turner Networks channels off the satellite carrier's program guide into 2015. 

Dish's subscriber base now stands at 13.844 million, compared to 14.097 million as of the end of Q1 2014.

The company will deliver its first-quarter investor call Monday at 12 p.m. EST. 

Englewood, Colo.-based Dish reported slight revenue growth for the quarter to $3.7 billion, up from $3.6 billion in Q1 2014. Net income grew to $351 million from $176 million in the year-ago period. 

For more:
- read this Dish Network earnings release
- read this Variety story

Earnings summary: Sizing up pay-TV earnings for the first quarter of 2015

Related links:
Dish loses 63K subs in Q4 as carriage battles take their toll
Dish makes deal with Fox News, ends blackout
Sling TV's Lynch: 'We don't think of people leaving the service as churn'

Update: The story was changed to reflect that Dish ended the first quarter of 2014 with 14.097 million subscribers. An earlier verison of this story attributed this figure to the incorrect quarter.

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