Dish Network Corp. on Tuesday reported first-quarter revenue and profit that were lower than what most Wall Street analysts predicted. Shares fell about 1.1% on the news, to around $33.50 mid-day Tuesday.
Shares of Dish (DISH) have dropped 29 percent since the beginning of the year as key growth signals have slowed for the satellite television provider. The stock has decreased 45 percent in the last 12 months.
The first quarter’s numbers delivered further disappointment. The company posted revenue of $3.46 billion in the period. That fell short of Wall Street forecasts of $3.5 billion, according to a Zacks Investment Research survey of analysts who follow Dish. First-quarter profit was $367.6 million — or 70 cents a share, lower than the 72 cents a share the analysts surveyed by Zacks had predicted.
The company’s latest earnings results follows a report bythat thousands of people who got a telemarketing call for Dish Network in 2010 or 2011 may be able to collect $1,200 per call — only they don’t know they could be eligible for the money. Lawyers say they are having trouble convincing people to sign up to get the money they’re owed from a $61 million class action lawsuit over sales pitches to people on the national Do Not Call Registry.
There’s been a 120 percent increase in complaints about violations of the list since 2014. Nearly 230 million numbers are on the registry. It was supposed to stop unwanted telemarketing, but it hasn’t. Thousands are now eligible for payback after a lawsuit against Dish Network, reports CBS News correspondent Anna Werner.
“When someone is on the do not call list, it means do not call,” Chicago resident Deborah Turner said. But telemarketers did call Turner. Salespeople for Dish Network allegedly dialed the Chicago banker 15 times in 2010 and 2011, asking her to sign up for their satellite TV service. So when she got another call recently from a man telling her she could receive up to $18,000 through a class-action lawsuit: “‘Yeah, right’ is my first thought. Right,” Turner said with a laugh.
John W. Barrett, an attorney with Bailey Glasser, is hearing that a lot as he tries to contact a group of people who may be eligible for thousands of dollars each. “Talking to them firsthand, I learned that they thought that we were, A, telemarketers, or B, trying to scam them,” Barrett said.
Some won’t answer. Others hang up on him. That’s despite the fact he did win a lawsuit against Dish Network for what a jury found was illegal telemarketing.
But it’s no scam. The jury awarded $400 for each of the 51,000 calls made in violation of the Do Not Call Registry. Not only that, a judge later determined Dish “willfully and knowingly violated” the law and tripled the damages to $1,200 per call. “The evidence was that Dish Network knew what was going on,” Barrett said. “It had the ability to put an end to it but didn’t.”
Dish is appealing the ruling. The company blames an outside contractor which has since shut down, telling CBS News “these calls violated Dish’s express instructions to the contractor.” As the appeals process plays out and Turner waits for her money, she said, “I have bills to pay. I have a mortgage.”
This lawsuit is in addition to a separate government case in which a court ordered Dish to pay a $280 million penalty. To check if your phone number received one of these calls, you can look it up on this website.
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