Thanks, EchoStar: TiVo nears its first profitable year

Despite TiVo's recent SEC filing that showed it would be laying off employees to cut expenses during the economic downturn, TiVo posted another "best quarter ever," bringing it closer to its first profitable year ever.

The positive closure of the third quarter was almost entirely thanks to the $105 million patent settlement from EchoStar, which came after a long legal battle over the time-shifting technologies used in both companies' DVR products. According to TiVo's President and CEO, Tom Rogers, there could be yet more money coming from that suit soon enough.

"We are pleased that the US District Court has scheduled a hearing on EchoStar's purported workaround for February 17, 2009," Rogers said in a statement today. "Contrary to EchoStar's recent statement, the court did not rule on TiVo's pending motion for contempt or the injunction. The court will do so after the hearing as well as rule on the amount of damages owed to TiVo beyond the nearly $105 million already paid by EchoStar (which EchoStar admitted at the September 4, 2008 hearing are owed).

"This is a positive step," the CEO continued, "particularly the accelerated discovery ordered by the court, towards the ultimate resolution of all issues in the litigation and we remain confident that we will prevail in showing that EchoStar's workaround does not avoid infringement, that the District Court will ultimately enforce the injunction and award further damages from EchoStar's continued infringement of our Time Warp patent."

The company's net income for the third quarter was $100.6 million, meaning that without the EchoStar damages, the company would have posted a loss of around $4.4 million. Last year's third quarter chalked up a loss of $8.3 million for TiVo.

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