/// Analyst: CBS Would Win the C7 Battle

December 14, 2012  |  Media Week

After taking a good, long look at TiVo’s set-top-box data as it pertains to prime time broadcast ratings, one influential analyst is of the opinion that Les is more. According to an investor’s note posted by Bernstein Research senior analyst Todd Juenger, the recent kerfuffle over the TV ratings currency is something of a tempest in a teapot. That said, it stands to reason that CBS Corp. CEO Les Moonves has been particularly vocal about making the jump from the C3 standard to enhanced C7 ratings—for one thing, CBS would enjoy the biggest lift from the additional four days of deliveries. Per TiVo’s set-top data, the broadcast networks see an average boost of 3 percent in nightly commercial deliveries when the time period under examination is extended from three days to seven. For the most part, the members of the Big Four would generally enjoy the same modest benefit from operating in a C7 universe. In the fourth quarter of 2011, CBS saw a 3 percent lift with four additional days of time-shifted playback, edging NBC by one-tenth of a ratings point and beating ABC by two-tenths. Statistically, Fox saw the smallest boost, as its 18-49 deliveries increased by 2.4 percent. But as Juenger pointed out, CBS’s slight advantage over its peers would likely translate into an edge in ancillary ad sales revenues. This is a function of CBS’ not having a vast portfolio of ad-supported cable networks, unlike NBCUniversal, News Corp. and Walt Disney Co.

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