Charlie Ergen, the billionaire who runs Dish Network Corp., resigned as CEO to focus on eliminating billions of dollars of the company's unused wireless spectrum.
Investors have been pushing for a big ticket to try to take advantage of the spectrum, which is ideal for streaming movies and keeping a cellular signal over long distances. Ergen, who will remain president, spoke last month of new opportunities for wireless badociations following the collapse of the merger talks between Sprint Corp. and T-Mobile US Inc.
The future of the company could Competing on the spectrum from Dish's satellite TV service has lost subscribers for at least the last three years to cheaper online services such as Netflix, Hulu and Amazon. As part of the Ergen move, Dish will adopt a group structure that said it will more effectively support DISH TV, as well as the company's own broadcast offer, Sling TV.
"We really do not think this suggests any strategic change in the one but it highlights Charlie's commitment to the 5G-like / capable network," Marci Ryvicker, an badyst at Wells Fargo Securities, wrote in a note. "We see today's announcement as more clean than anything else."
Dish shares traded very little at $ 51.94 as of 11:25 a.m. In New York. The stock has declined around 11 percent this year.
Ergen probably has to start building a network to put Dish waves for next year if he does not have a deal. Dish must comply with the requirements of the Federal Communications Commission to deploy a network that uses the spectrum by 2020, Josh Yatskowitz, badyst at Bloomberg Intelligence, said last month.
As president, the 64-year-old executive will continue to control the company he co-founded. The director of operations, Erik Carlson, who has been with Dish since 1995, was promoted to executive director and will continue to inform Ergen, according to a statement on Tuesday.
This is not the first time that the unpredictable Ergen has resigned as CEO. In 2011, he stopped directing daily operations for focusing on the integration of a number of companies he had acquired. He resumed his CEO title in 2015.
The new changes come in what could be a pivotal moment for Dish, of Englewood, Colorado, as Ergen is looking for a commercial application for the vacuum of air wave licenses.
"The last time there was a reorganization round, it gave President Ergen the opportunity to follow the strategic direction of the company," said Amy Yong, an badyst at Macquarie. "I think this indicates the same thing."
– With the badistance of Scott Moritz