February 20, 2014 |
Activist hedge fund manager Bill Ackman continued his relentless attack on Herbalife, releasing a report that accuses millionaire Herbalife distributor John Tartol of misleading others into selling the company's nutrition products. Ackman's company, Pershing Square Capital Management, said in the report released on its website Thursday that Tartol has made millions of dollars by misleading people into believing they can get rich as independent Herbalife distributors. “What took us that many years to do - 25, 30-plus years - you can all do in the next six, seven, eight years,” Tartol said at a 2011 Herbalife convention in Las Vegas, according to Ackman's report.
January 11, 2014 |
The Weather Channel is threatening to rain all over DirecTV if it can't come to terms on a new distribution agreement with the satellite broadcaster. The current contract between DirecTV, which has more than 20 million subscribers, and the Weather Channel expired at the end of last year. An extension was agreed upon, but now the Weather Channel is anticipating that DirecTV will drop the service because the two are still at an impasse. The current extension expires Tuesday. "For DirecTV to take us off their lineup would be deeply irresponsible to its customers who not only count on the Weather Channel on a day-to-day basis, but depend on us before, during and after severe weather events," David Kenny, the chief executive of Weather Channel parent Weather Co. said in a statement.
January 9, 2014 |
After four years and tens of millions of dollars spent on developing a new channel, WWE Corp. ultimately decided to bet on itself. Its new network, unveiled Wednesday at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas , is not a traditional channel that will be distributed by pay-TV distributors including cable and satellite companies. Instead, it will be an online network that WWE fans can watch if they shell out $9.99 per month. By going the so-called over-the-top or OTT route, WWE is bypassing launching a network that would likely have been a slam dunk with distributors.
January 9, 2014 |
Satellite broadcaster DirecTV is less than thrilled with the WWE's plans to launch an online network and said it will have to rethink its relationship with the programmer and whether it will continue to offer its pay-per-view specials. As part of the WWE's online network, which will launch next month, its 12 pay-per-view specials including the hugely popular "Wrestlemania" will be made available to subscribers at a price tag of $9.99 a month. Traditional pay-TV distributors including DirecTV have for years counted on WWE's pay-per-view specials as a solid revenue source.
December 12, 2013 |
Looking to bring an end to channels going dark as a result of contract disputes between broadcasters and pay-TV distributors, two lawmakers are proposing legislation that could radically alter the media landscape. Reps. Anna Eshoo and Zoe Lofgren, both California Democrats, on Thursday introduced the Video CHOICE (Consumers Have Options in Choosing Entertainment) Act, which was praised by pay-TV distributors and criticized by broadcasters. "My bill would put an end to broadcast television blackouts and ensure consumers aren't held hostage by a dispute they have no control over," said Eshoo, who is ranking member of the House Communications and Technology Subcommittee.
December 10, 2013 |
Time Warner Chief Executive Jeff Bewkes said pay-TV distributors need to step up their game when it comes to video-on-demand. Speaking at the UBS Global Media and Communications Conference in New York on Tuesday, Bewkes praised the potential video-on-demand has for the entertainment industry in that it makes it easier for consumers to catch up on shows they've missed and discover new content. But at the same time, he chastised distributors for not doing more to not only promote VOD but also for having complicated interfaces that frustrate customers.