DirecTV Could Lose USD600m Annual Revenue if NFL Cancels

March 16, 2011

America’s largest satellite-television provider, DirecTV (DTV), could lose out on more than US$600m in revenue this year according to analysts’ estimates, if the National Football League (NFL) cancels the 2011 season, according to analysts’ estimates.

DirecTV’s NFL Sunday Ticket allows viewers to watch every NFL game and generated between $600m and $750m in subscription revenue last season alone. If it got the same number as last year, the company would have added another $44m in new Sunday Ticket subscribers this year, according to Craig Moffett of Sanford C. Bernstein & Co.

The programming runs for $335 per season on top of regular subscription fees, and isn’t offered by any other operator..

New York-based Moffett, who has a “market perform” rating on the company’s stock and doesn’t own any, stated: “Usually Sunday Ticket brings them a number of new subscribers. They are losing one of their biggest marketing draws.”

The NFL said it would shut down the most-watched and wealthiest U.S. sport on Friday, March 11, after talks broke down over how to divide $9bn in annual revenue. Both sides are exploring ways to salvage the season, with the league saying it’s committed to mediation and the players’ association filing suit to prevent a lockout.

Michael White, DirecTV’s chief executive officer, said in an interview on March 11: “We’re optimistic that we will be fine. Our hope is that somewhere between now and the summer, this gets resolved, hopefully sooner rather than later.”