March 15 (Reuters) - Dish Network Corp said it is suing Comcast Corp’s NBCUniversal for breach of contract and expects to file for arbitration to block NBC from blacking out its channels such as CNBC and Bravo.
NBC and Dish are locking horns over the monthly price per subscriber the satellite operator would pay to carry NBC’s channels.
Dish said the complaint relates to current distribution renewal negotiations with NBCUniversal.
“NBC’s public statements against Dish over the past 24 hours are in violation of the contract between the two companies,” Dish said in a statement. “Today, Dish filed a breach of contract lawsuit against NBC to address those violations.”
NBC had launched a website, makedishdeliver.com, explaining how Dish subscribers could loose access to popular programs such as “The Real Housewives of Atlanta,” “The Magicians,” and “Squawk Box.”
The website urged Dish customers to push the carrier to keep NBCUniversal’s channels on the service.
NBC was not immediately available for comment.
This is the latest battle between distributors and media companies that have grown frequent and public. Dish was involved in a similar contract dispute with CBS in 2014. (bit.ly/1nM3zJR)
Dish Network’s shares closed down nearly 1 percent at $48.58, while Comcast’s shares closed little changed at $59.40. (Reporting by Yashaswini Swamynathan in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D‘Silva)