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Brazilian Sky provider NetSat loses $50 mil

Company reaches 555,000 subs, revs up to $47.5 mil

RIO DE JANEIRO — NetSat, provider of the Sky satellite service in Brazil, suffered a second-quarter loss due mainly to its policy of subsidizing decoder sales.

NetSat did consolidate its satellite market leadership by reaching a subscriber count of 555,000 in June, up 9% from March and 54% from June 1999. DirecTV provider Galaxy Brasil, NetSat’s major competitor, had 412,000 subs in March.

NetSat’s net revenue was up to $47.5 million in the second quarter, from $44.8 million in the first quarter and $33.9 million in the second quarter of 1999.

But the operator’s net loss reached $49.9 million in the second quarter, up from a loss of $19.5 million in the first quarter and a loss of $16.9 million in the second quarter of 1999.

“We sell decoders for 399 reais ($221) a piece, while its cost amounts to almost twice as much,” NetSat chief financial officer Ricardo Miranda explained.

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