Dish Network plots $2B debt move to fund 5G build - Mobile World Live

Dish Network plots $2B debt move to fund 5G build

03 NOV 2022

Dish Network detailed plans to raise about $2 billion through its senior secured notes to fund an ongoing 5G network deployment, a move analyst outfit MoffattNathanson warned could lead to a bankruptcy of the operator’s mobile unit.

Charlie Ergen, Dish Network chair, explained on its Q3 earnings call the $2 billion debt offering would be limited to qualified investors and provide additional financing for its mobile network build.

In a research note, analyst company MoffattNathanson questioned whether the sum Dish Network is targeting will be sufficient and stated it would be worth watching the interest rate charged on the debt.

Analyst Craig Moffett stated increased debt would be costly to Dish Network and the most likely outcome for its wireless business was bankruptcy.

Ergen explained the additional funding would help its mobile unit exceed a government mandate for it to cover 70 per cent of the US population by June 2023.

He stated Dish Network is building an average of 1,000 tower sites per month. It added a total of 10,000 sites during Q3 taking its population coverage to 35 per cent, but continued to lose mobile users, ending the quarter with 8 million compared with 8.7 million in Q3 2021.

Ergen added it was on track to launch its post-paid Boost Infinite brand in Q1 2023 though still had “a lot of operational issues” to work out.

Revenue fell 7.9 per cent year-on-year to $4.1 billion while net income attributable to the company was $412.2 million compared with $557 million.

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Mike Robuck

Mike Robuck is the U.S. Editor at Mobile World Live. He joined the Mobile World Live staff in February of 2022. Prior to joining GSMA, he was editor of FierceTelecom and of Light Reading’s Telco Transformation microsite. He has a...

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