December 8, 2011 |
Call it a cable squeeze play. Cable television networks may be the most lucrative divisions of many large media companies, but the networks are beginning to feel the pinch of dramatically higher programming costs. In 2006, TV sports giant ESPN spent $3.5 billion on programming for its flagship channel. This year, the channel's content costs have mushroomed to $5.2 billion — a nearly 50% jump from five years ago, according to consulting firm SNL Kagan. Programming expenses for Time Warner Inc.'s TNT channel have soared 55% since 2006 to $1.1 billion this year, propelled by sports rights fees for NBA and NCAA basketball as well as a lineup of original dramas including "The Closer" and "Falling Skies.
September 3, 2013 |
Cord-cutting continues to nibble away at the U.S. pay-TV industry. According to a SNL Kagan report released Tuesday, the industry suffered a net loss of 217,000 subscribers in the second quarter of this year compared to the same period last year. The report also showed that traditional cable companies -- including Time Warner Cable -- are losing more subscribers to satellite and telecommunications competitors that also offer video service. The report illustrated why Time Warner Cable had little choice but to settle its contentious dispute with CBS Corp., which led to a monthlong blackout of CBS-owned stations in Los Angeles, New York and Dallas.
December 18, 2012 |
Time Warner Cable plans to drop the small Santa Monica-based channel Ovation from its programming lineup at year's end -- a blow to the independent network that has attempted to elevate TV coverage of the arts and contemporary culture. The nation's second-largest cable television provider said its decision came down to simple economics. There hasn't been enough demand for the channel, which was seeking a modest rate increase when negotiations over a new distribution agreement stalled several months ago. “Steeply escalating programming costs are forcing us to closely assess each network as it comes up for renewal,” Time Warner Cable said Tuesday in a statement.
November 6, 2009 |
The cost of travel has really gone through the roof. Scripps Networks Interactive Inc. has bought a majority stake in the Travel Channel from Cox Communications Inc. in a cash-and-debt deal that values the little-watched cable network at $975 million. Scripps is betting the channel will be a good fit with its other lifestyle networks, including Home & Garden TV and its majority stake in Food Network (which also counts Los Angeles Times parent Tribune Co. as an owner). The steep price caught many analysts by surprise.
November 15, 2012 |
The Lakers may not have Phil Jackson but at least they have DirecTV. Ending a long standoff, satellite broadcaster DirecTV has reached an agreement to carry Time Warner Cable's SportsNet, which is the new television home for the Lakers. As part of the pact, DirecTV will also carry Deportes, the Spanish-language sister channel of SportsNet. Laker fans who have DirecTV won't be the only ones cheering the decision. Many bars and restaurants with DirecTV have seen their businesses take a hit without having Laker games on the big screen.
November 5, 2012 |
Cablevision Systems Corp. has signed a long-term distribution deal to carry broadcast and cable networks owned by Comcast's NBCUniversal unit. The agreement includes broadcast networks NBC and Telemundo as well as cable channels USA, Bravo, MSNBC, CNBC and NBC Sports Network. Cablevision has more than 3 million subscribers, primarily in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut. The NBCUniversal accord is Cablevision's third in recent months with a major content supplier. It has also signed agreements with CBS and Walt Disney Co. All the deals were reached without customers losing any signals, which often happens during these negotiations, including when Cablevision and News Corp.