Posts Tagged ‘cable’

Time Warner Rebuffed Offer From Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox

July 16, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Rupert Murdoch's media empire 21st Century Fox made an $80 billion takeover bid last month for Time Warner Inc. but was rebuffed, The New York Times reports . "21st Century Fox can confirm that we made a formal proposal to Time Warner last month to combine the two companies," the company said in a statement released today. "The Time Warner Board of Directors declined to pursue our proposal. We are not currently in any discussions with Time Warner." "As part of the proposal to buy Time Warner, people briefed on the proposal said, 21st Century Fox indicated that it would sell CNN to head off potential antitrust concerns since Fox News competes directly with CNN," reports The New York Times. CBS and ABC are viewed as suitors in this scenario, which could spark a bidding war. 21st Century Fox originally approached Time Warner in early June, in a private meeting between 21st Century Fox president Chase Carey and Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes, and delivered a formal takeover proposal later in the month, according to The New York Time's sources. According to the same sources, Time Warner's board "discuess the proposal at length" before deciding that Time Warner was better off remaining independent and delivered "a terse letter rejecting the offer" early this month. One of the main points of contention was that "the stock portion of 21st Century Fox's offer would be made with nonvoting shares." While 21st Century Fox claims to not be in discussions with Time Warner at the moment, "people involved in the discussions" told The New York Times "Mr. Murdoch is determined to buy Time Warner and is unlikely to walk away." That publication points out that Murdoch's empire was built largely by pursuing ambitious deals that were originally rebuffed. Together, 21st Century Fox and Time Warner would have a combined revenue of $65 billion. Its array of networks and channels would include HBO, Fox, Fox News, FX, TBS and TNT; movie studios 20th Century Fox and Warner Brothers; and Time Warner's rights to NBA and NCAA basketball and MLB baseball. Time Warner shares were up 20 percent in premarket trading this morning following the news.

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Comcast CEO Brian Roberts Extends Contract By a Year

July 1, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Comcast Chairman and CEO Brian Roberts has extended his contract at the cable giant by a year, according to filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. His new contract will expire on June 30, 2015 and continues the media executive’s habit of extending his employment agreements for one year terms on an annual basis. The... Read more

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NBCU Appoints CFO for E! and Esquire Network

June 30, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

NBCUniversal announced today that it has appointed Donald C. "D.C." Storm II as CFO of E! and Esquire Network. Formerly the vp of financial planning and analysis at NBCU Corporate, Storm will assume the new position immediately. Storm, who is based in Los Angeles, will report to E! President Suzanne Kolb and Esquire chief Adam Stotsky. His role

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Turner Nears the Upfront Finish Line

June 27, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

As broadcast closes out this week, big kahuna cable conglomerate Turner is working on the last of its deals, with CPM increases around the 6 percent range and flat volume (a good thing in a market where volume is flat to down across all of television and down quite a bit in broadcast), according to an industry source familiar with negotiations.

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Supreme Court Effectively Puts Aereo Out of Business

June 25, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

The official word on Aereo came down from the Supreme Court today, and the word is "no."

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That’s a $6 Billion Upfront Wrap for All of NBCUniversal

June 24, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

NBC broadcast has wrapped its upfront sales effort, securing $2.52 billion in ad dollars across prime time, sports and late night, say sources familiar with the conversation: it's a significant gain over the $2.25 billion the network logged last year for the same dayparts and due in large part to high commitments keyed to the Super Bowl, as well as a strong prime-time slate. NBCU sells its properties as a portfolio, including cable and broadcast in the same package, so the final tally is in for the cable networks, as well: just shy of $6 billion for all the properties, including roughly 75 percent of the digital inventory it's planning to sell in the upfront. Last year, the tally for the whole package was $5.4 billion. It's no surprise that the media company is reporting an uptick in sales: the whole-portfolio strategy gives NBCU plenty of sway over buyers and clients who all need time on something (likely more than one something) in the company's huge library of platforms. Moreover, ad sales head Linda Yaccarino has the Super Bowl to leverage this year, and the company is said to be asking $4.5 million a spot after an additional commitment of another $4.5 million elsewhere in the group. For broadcast prime alone, sources say pricing is up between 7.5 and 8 percent—not far off from last year's gains over 2011-12, with a volume increase of 15 percent in the bargain (a bold move that could come back to hurt the company if ratings decline this fall). The latter is something neither ABC nor CBS have boasted over the course of their upfront negotiations, though sources at competing networks are quick to point out that this is a corrective year for NBC—the network was down a few years ago, and now it's climbing back up.

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Top Chef Duels Host Claims Real Housewives Are Saner Than You Think

June 20, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Specs Who

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Robert Rodriguez Does Everything From Programming to Sound Editing at El Rey Network

June 11, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Robert Rodriguez made a name for himself in the '90s as a movie director alongside frequent collaborator and friend Quentin Tarantino, but his latest claim to fame has been his El Rey network, which came out swinging with a TV version of Rodriguez's vampire flick From Dusk Till Dawn this March. The network itself—headquartered in Rodriguez's Austin—was the creation of a quirk in the Federal Communications Commission's conditions for the merger of NBCUniversal and Comcast, along with several other cable channels. Of the group, El Rey is far and away the highest-profile, and the slickest. We talked to Rodriguez about the network, its future, and what he's doing next (besides delivering keynote addresses

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Nickelodeon Renews ‘Sanjay and Craig’ for Season 3 (EXCLUSIVE)

June 11, 2014  |  Variety  |  No Comments

ANNECY –Nickelodeon has renewed “Sanjay and Craig,” featuring voice stars Maulik Pancholy (“30 Rock,” “Weeds”) and Chris Hardwick (“The Talking Dead,” “Attack of the Show!”), for a 20 half-hour-episode Season 3. The third season order comes before Season 2 (pictured) has begun to air next month. That’s a big show of confidence from the cable... Read more

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Game of Thrones Is the Most Popular Show on HBO, Ever

June 5, 2014  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

The adventures of Tyrion Lannister, Daenerys Targaryen and Jon Snow (among other characters, most of whom are probably dead now) have officially beaten out another HBO series with a lot of sudden deaths: The Sopranos. HBO confirmed that the series now boasts an average gross viewership (bear in mind that's across multiple airings of each show) of 18.4 million viewers, edging out Tony and Carmella's 18.2 million average. The show is such a ratings juggernaut that it's sapping a huge number of viewers from the ratings pool on Sunday evenings—and it's not just linear viewership, either. Without advertisements to deliver, HBO has been free to launch an app that now shows its original programs simultaneously with the linear broadcast. This has been great for the network's visibility but not as great for its servers, which crashed earlier this season when record viewer numbers flooded the app to find out who was next up for a beheading. It's also the most pirated show on television, according to peer-to-peer news site TorrentFreak , but as far as Time Warner chief Jeff Bewkes is concerned, that's a great thing . "That's better than an Emmy," he blithely told an analyst who informed him of the stat on an earnings call. Game of Thrones was recently renewed for not just a fifth season but a sixth as well . This

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