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Rentrak: Data Tops Rev-Share for the First Time

9 Aug, 2012 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Dish Network takes 7% ownership stake in Rentrak

Rentrak Corp. Aug. 9 reported first-quarter (ended June 30) home entertainment operating income of nearly $1.8 million, down 23% from operating income of $2.3 million during the previous-year period.

The Portland, Ore.-based media measurement company posted $10.6 million in rev-sharing revenue from its namesake home entertainment segment — down 17% from revenue of $12.8 million during the previous-year period.

The decline primarily reflects lower sales levels at Rentrak's retail store customers related to increased competition faced by the stores from alternative distribution channels, fewer video rental stores and Warner Bros.’ decision to release its video content in the retail channel before offering it to the rental market.

Meanwhile, the company's advanced media and information (AMI) business saw revenue increase 31% to $12.6 million, compared with $9.6 million last year — representing 54% of Rentrak's consolidated revenue. The AMI unit includes business segments that track TV ratings, box office sales and video-on-demand transactions, among other markets.

“For the first time, our AMI business generated more than half of Rentrak's revenue, signifying an important milestone for our business,” CEO Bill Livek said in a statement. 

Finally, Rentrak said it extended an exclusive agreement with Dish Network to continue tracking the satellite-TV operator’s viewing data. As part of the new agreement, Dish will receive $5.8 million cash and 700,000 shares of Rentrak common stock in consideration for past services. Dish has not received any payment from Rentrak in exchange for its TV viewing data since 2008 because the former agreement was based on a profit-sharing arrangement, which will continue under the new agreement.

As a result of the satellite TV operator’s new 7% direct ownership position, Rentrak expects to record a charge of $16.5 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2013 related to the agreement with Dish.

Rentrak also eyes Dish’s partnership as validation of its media measurement business.

“Our long-term partnership with Dish has helped produce the most comprehensive measurement system for television viewing across every zip code in America,” Livek said. 

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