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Nielsen signs deal with Dish for viewing data

Dish Network Chairman Charlie Ergen attends the Google's annual developers conference in San Francisco, California May 20, 2010. REUTERS/Robert Galbraith

(Reuters) - U.S.-based advertising tracking company Nielsen Holdings Plc (NLSN.N) said it signed a multi-year agreement with Dish Network Corp (DISH.O) to use data from Dish households to improve its understanding of viewing habits.

The deal, Nielsen's first with a pay-TV network, will also help advertisers and networks improve their marketing and programming decisions, Dish said.

Nielsen, which is the dominant player in television ratings, considered the currency used to determine ad rates for commercials, said on Monday data provided by Dish would be used in its Local TV measurement service in 210 market areas.

The deal comes after data analytics provider ComScore Inc (SCOR.O) signed a similar agreement with Dish on Friday. ComScore bought viewership rating company Rentrak Corp last year in a deal with an implied value of about $771 million.

(Reporting by Narottam Medhora in Bengaluru; Editing by Anupama Dwivedi)