Posts Tagged ‘netflix’

A French Company Is About to Become America’s 4th Largest Cable Provider

September 17, 2015  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

After 42 years, the Dolan family will no longer control Cablevision. The New York-based cable operator announced this morning it has agreed to sell to Altice Group, a European telecom company controlled by French cable entrepreneur Patrick Drahi. Altice will pay $34.90 a share, making the deal worth $17.7 billion including debt. The acquisition also includes Newsday Media Group, publisher of Newsday and amNewYork, but does not include the Madison Square Garden Company, which owns the namesake arena and the New York Knicks and New York Rangers. It's the second U.S. deal for Altice this year. The company announced plans to acquire Suddenlink Communications, which operates in 17 midwestern and southern states, in May. Cablevision, which predominately serves the New York metro area and Long Island, has about 3.1 million subscribers. Altice says that with Suddenlink and Cablevision combined, it will be the fourth largest U.S. cable provider, behind Comcast, Charter and Time Warner Cable (the latter two of which are attempting to merge). "The deal underscores the increasingly global nature of premium video content and distribution, a trend that is also illustrated by the international growth path that Netflix is on," said Eric Schmitt, evp of TV and media at cross-channel marketing firm Allant. This morning's deal caps a frenzied two years of cable consolidation as subscribers continue to drop cable in favor of going over the top—Cablevision lost 16,000 cable homes in the second quarter while adding 14,000 Internet-only customers. And that's not going to make customers who are increasingly dissatisfied with their cable service any happier, notes Stephen Beck, founder and managing partner of management consultancy cg42. "Cablevision was not as bad from a brand vulnerability perspective as a Comcast or Time Warner, but they had substantial frustrations that customers were experiencing," said Beck, who has found 33 percent of cable customers are not happy with their service. "The frustration rates are higher than any category that we've studied," he said. "Will nontraditional players and OTT providers continue to benefit from the soup of misery that the cable companies seem to want to create for their customers?" Altice has invested heavily in broadband and Internet services for its other global operations. With Cablevision and Suddenlink, it hopes to have the heft to keep what it pays for programming in check. Schmitt said the heat is already high on networks, and this deal could bring it closer to a boiling point; Suddenlink dropped Viacom's channels earlier this year when the two couldn't come to carriage terms.

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Fullscreen Finally Admits It’s Launching a Subscription Service

September 16, 2015  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Following months of rumors, Fullscreen has let the cat of the bag—it's launching its own subscription service. Though Fullscreen had been working on the service, simply called Fullscreen, for months, this is the first time the multichannel network has publicly talked about it. In a blog post announcing the service, CEO George Strompolos said the goal was to "bridge the gap between social media and television for youth audiences." Fullscreen did not provide much detail about the upcoming service and made no mention of price or a potential launch date—though it likely won't happen until next year. The company did not say if the paid service will include ads, but it is expected that branded content will be a part of the platform. (The company recently acquired McBeard , a social media content studio that supports major brands across platforms.) Fullscreen did say the subscription product would feature series exclusive to the platform—including Grace Helbig and Hannah Hart's upcoming reboot of Sid and Marty Krofft's Electra Woman and Dyna Girl—and would also look to develop other formats like podcasts and editorial content. Fullscreen will also house documentaries The Outfield and #O2LForever and the upcoming Paul Scheer-Jonathan Stern teen parody series. The announcement comes at a time when content creators, especially multichannel networks, are looking for greater ownership and control of their content

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Orange Is the New Black Star Pablo Schreiber on the Perils of Live-Tweeting

August 31, 2015  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Specs Age 37 Claim to fame Emmy Award nominee for his role as George "Pornstache" Mendez on Netflix's Orange Is the New Black ; star of HBO's The Brink; appears in the Michael Bay film 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi (in theaters Jan. 15) Base New York Twitter @schreiber_pablo Adweek: What's the first information you consume in the morning? Pablo Schreiber: The first information I consume in the morning is no information. I think it's really important to reset the brain in the morning. We get bombarded so much in our daily lives, so the first thing I do when I wake up is meditate.

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Australia’s Quickflix Cancels China Takeover Deal

August 24, 2015  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Collapsed deal follows closure of struggling rival streaming video service EzyFlix.

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Trump Will ‘Absolutely Not’ Be Back on Celebrity Apprentice

August 13, 2015  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

On the 17th and final day of the Television Critics Association's summer press tour panels, NBC Entertainment chairman Robert Greenblatt summarized this tour's recurring themes. "Too many shows, not enough monetization, fractured audience, Netflix doesn't report ratings, what did Nielsen do this time?" he said. "And how do we find the next big comedy? In a nutshell, that's sort of what keeps me up at night." NBC, which publicly parted ways with Donald Trump in June, said it will not broadcast a new version of Celebrity Apprentice this season, but the show will return in 2016 "with a new host," Greenblatt said. Whoever that is will need to "make noise and be a big personality," he added. The network is "almost done" selling off its interest in the Miss USA Pageant, according to Greenblatt, who summarized the current relationship with Trump: "At the moment, we're sort of separated." However, he wouldn't say Trump is "banned" from the network, given that he "might be the leader of the free world." If Trump isn't elected president, could he return as Celebrity Apprentice host? "Absolutely not," said Greenblatt. Comedy Struggles and Thursday Night Of course, there's a little more than that weighing on the network boss as he looks ahead to fall. Even though NBC was the No. 1 network last season among adults ages 18 to 49 for the second year in a row, its trouble spots remain the same as when Greenblatt last met with reporters in January —comedies and its Thursday night lineup. "The fall is sort of a clean start for all of us, which I'm happy about," said Greenblatt. "We've been in a difficult transition in the last couple years," Greenblatt said, with the departure of 30 Rock, The Office and Parks and Recreation

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Japan TV Networks to Launch TVer Online Video Platform

July 20, 2015  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Japan’s five top commercial TV networks will jointly launch a service to stream their new shows on the Internet, starting in October.

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Eight Reasons Why Netflix Will Struggle In China

June 17, 2015  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Subscriber data from iQIYI and Alibaba's plan to enrich its Internet Plus roster underline the obstacles to penetrating China's SVoD market

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Why Networks Are Going for Broke This Summer

May 26, 2015  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

For decades, the broadcast networks took the idea of summer vacation quite literally—programming reruns and other filler content from June through mid-September, much to the frustration of advertisers. Those days are finally over, as broadcasters follow the lead of cable and, more recently, Netflix, by packing their summer slates with big series presented in unique ways that help audiences more easily consume content and aid advertisers in reaching viewers. "Summer is a critical time period for so many advertisers: back-to-school, retail, summer movies," noted Darcy Bowe, vp, media director at Starcom. "You really want to get your message out there, but because the broadcasters weren't programming anything new, people were trained not to watch TV in the summer." NBC is the first broadcaster to pull a Netflix with the May 28 debut of limited series Aquarius, starring David Duchovny. Immediately after the network premiere, the entire 13-episode series will be available to stream at NBC's website, on its mobile app and via other VOD platforms. The network will continue to air new episodes each week, but audiences can choose to binge on the entire series at once. Meanwhile, CBS has partnered with Netflix for its big summer premiere, Zoo, which will stream on the service as soon as its CBS run has concluded. Cable is also trying a nonlinear approach to summer programming. USA comedy Playing House returns for Season 2 in August with a VOD windowing strategy. Each episode will be made available on VOD one week before it airs on the network, with creator/stars Lennon Parham and Jessica St. Clair partnering with advertisers to create customized content. "If you have Toyota or one of our other sponsors in there, you'll be able to create content that's about Playing House but also about the sponsor as well," said Chris McCumber, USA's president. Because these shows are airing outside the September-to-May TV season, broadcasters have the flexibility to experiment without affecting the traditional fall schedule. Robert Greenblatt, NBC Entertainment chairman, said his network was able to stream Aquarius in full (the ad load of the linear broadcast will mirror that of VOD) because production on the entire season had already wrapped—unlike with most broadcast production schedules, which are only a few weeks ahead of an episode's airdate. Thanks to CBS' deal with Netflix, Zoo (based on the James Patterson novel) will be profitable before the drama even debuts on June 30. That gives the network a safety net as it attempts to lure a different audience during the summer months. Like CBS summer series Under the Dome and Extant, "Zoo is a big, epic-looking and feeling show," said CBS Entertainment chair Nina Tassler. "And they're all highly serialized. We don't do that during the regular season, so summer allows us to recruit new viewers and bring them into fall." While USA routinely airs series during the summer, "we've always seen August as an opportunity because it feels like there's a little bit of a dead space there," said McCumber. "So we thought it would be a great space to put Playing House where it will get more attention … and on top of that create a new opportunity for advertisers to come in and sell it in a different way." Advertisers worry whether digital platforms will cannibalize viewership on terrestrial television

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Thanks to Mad Men and Avengers, Actress Linda Cardellini Knows How to Keep a Secret

May 12, 2015  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Specs Age 39 Claim to fame Stars in Netflix's Bloodline; appears in The Avengers and Welcome to Me (both in theaters now); plays Sylvia Rosen on AMC's Mad Men Base Los Angeles Twitter @LindaCardellini What's the first information you consume in the morning? Well, I look and make sure that no one has called, that there have been no emergencies, and then I look at whatever comes up on my phone. Tell us about your social media habits. What are your go-to platforms? I don't have any really. I should get some.

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Q&A: CW President Mark Pedowitz Gets Guys

May 7, 2015  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

For much of its existence, The CW has been shunted off to the side by its bigger, and more popular, broadcast siblings. Launched in 2006 when UPN and The WB combined forces, The CW's tiny audience is usually relegated it to a mere footnote when compared to the likes of CBS, NBC, Fox and ABC. But The CW has suddenly become a broadcaster to be reckoned with, thanks to its two freshman hits: The Flash, which is already most-watched show in The CW's history and the critically-acclaimed Jane the Virgin, which nabbed the network its first-ever Peabody Award and Golden Globe wins. Along with Arrow, The Vampire Diaries and Supernatural, the shows have led The CW to its most-watched season since 2007-2008, and increases this season on four of The CW's five nights of programming (only Thursdays, thanks to ABC's unstoppable lineup of Shonda Rhimes shows, has taken a hit). More proof of the network's broadening audience: its median age is now 43, up from 37 three years ago, and the audience is now 45 percent male, versus 35 percent male three years ago. CW president Mark Pedowitz is also using the network's digital arm, CW Seed, to develop new comedies for the network. In a Q&A ahead of next week's upfronts, Pedowitz talked about the advantages of aging up the network, wooing new advertisers and how Doctor Who inspired his crossover strategy. The CW audience is now almost 45 percent male. What shows are most responsible for adding men? It's The Flash, Arrow, The 100 and Supernatural. Had you been actively pursuing a male audience with those shows? We recognize that when Smallville went off the air [in 2011] we lost a boatload of men. So this was a thoughtful, executed piece of a strategy to balance it out a little more

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