DirecTV Group Inc., the nation's largest satellite-television provider, said second-quarter profit rose 1.6% as high-definition channels attracted new customers.
Net income climbed to $455 million, or 40 cents a share, from $448 million, or 37 cents, a year earlier, DirecTV said. Sales jumped 16% to $4.81 billion. Profit met the average analyst estimate compiled by Bloomberg.
Chief Executive Chase Carey attributed the gains to the company's emphasis on adding high-definition programming. The HD channels, which have helped DirecTV fend off telephone companies offering pay TV service, will expand to 130 this month, including ABC Family HD and 12 regional sports networks.
DirecTV signed 129,000 additional U.S. customers during the quarter, topping the 128,000 added in the same period last year, to bring the total in the U.S. to 17.2 million. Sales exceeded the $4.72-billion average estimate of analysts.
Shares of the El Segundo-based company, which is 48% owned by Liberty Media Corp., rose 41 cents to $27.65 after the earnings announcement.