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Thread: Daily Satellite TV News

Turner ramps up on-demand Editor | 07 August 2015 In a bid to offer its subscribers multiple binge-viewing opportunities, Turner

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    Turner ramps up on-demand

    Editor | 07 August 2015



    In a bid to offer its subscribers multiple binge-viewing opportunities, Turner Broadcasting System is ramping up its video-on-demand (VOD) efforts, including an on-demand sneak peek of episodes of key series.


    The effort will include the upcoming TNT series Public Morals the day after the series' 25 August premiere, plus brand new episodes of truTV's Friends of the People before their TV debut. TNT will make episodes one to four of Public Morals available for fans to watch anytime and anywhere through set-top VOD, the Watch TNT mobile app, as well as on participating TV providers' websites and apps.

    For binge viewers, every single episode of all seasons of truTV's Impractical Jokers and TNT's Cold Justice will be made available on a variety of TV everywhere platforms and devices including online and on mobile devices such as via Watch truTV Full Episodes ? Live On-Demand Simulcast, the Watch truTV mobile app and set-top VOD. Episodes currently airing from season three, which premiered on 31 July, are made available on-demand the day after their TV debut and will stay up through the finale, giving fans the option to catch up on the entire series all at once.

    "Turner is embracing a different approach to the way programming is traditionally released and providing our audiences with multiple binge-viewing options in order to enhance their TV experience," explained John Harran, senior vice president of business & product development at Turner Content Distribution (TCD), the domestic distribution, sales and marketing arm of Turner. "Taking a creative approach to on demand programming and listening to viewer behaviour, as well as working with our distribution partners to reach as many of their subscribers as possible, is a strategic way to engage audiences who have become accustomed to these new ways of viewing content."

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    Media, pay-TV stocks take a beating

    Michelle Clancy | 07 August 2015



    Media and pay-TV stocks have seen some carnage this week — with concerns about the latter inspiring investors to flee the former, despite decent-ish Q2 results across the board.


    Comcast shares fell by almost 5%, and Charter, Cablevision, and Time Warner Cable all fell to varying degrees. Media stocks saw worse: shares of Time Warner, Inc fell by 9% on Wednesday, Discovery Communications Inc shares fell by 12%, 21st Century Fox shares fell by 7%, Viacom by 7.5% and Disney by 9.2%.

    Analysts say that despite cord-cutting being a relatively small real impact on cable businesses and pay-TV in general, it still has investors spooked.

    "Cable operators are not media companies; they are infrastructure providers," said Craig Moffett of MoffettNathanson. "On the other hand, we have been warning for the past six months that a quickening of the pace of cord-cutting was likely during the second quarter and that cable stocks were likely to suffer as a result. Indeed, our relatively cautious stance on the cable stocks for the past two-and-a-half years, after so many years as an inveterate 'cable bull,' has been that cord-cutting would pressure the cable video distribution profit pool at precisely the time that regulatory pressure was mounting on broadband pricing, and that this interplay between technology change and regulatory scrutiny would necessarily raise questions about terminal growth rates and therefore warranted multiples."

    He doesn't expect things to end here either. "We'll be looking for a bigger pullback in valuations and, just as importantly, a qualitative sense that sentiment really has shifted, before we get more constructive," he concluded.

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    BBC America spurs AMC to beat the Street in Q2

    Michelle Clancy | 07 August 2015



    AMC Networks posted double-digit gains in revenue and profit for the second quarter thanks to the addition of BBC America to its portfolio of domestic cable networks.


    Total revenue for the company climbed 15.1% to $601 million, powered by nearly 23% gain for its national networks. Net income rose to $83 million, or $1.14 per share, from $58.6 million in the year-ago quarter. The figures well surpassed analyst estimates.

    Currency headwinds, however, sent AMC's growing international portfolio and IFC Films to a $9 million loss, compared with a $3.7 million in operating income in the year-ago quarter.

    The domestic success was largely fuelled by the fact that the pay-TV company closed a $200 million deal with the BBC last October to take control of BBC America, which helped AMC's cable nets division grow advertising 13.4% to $186 million, despite declining ratings for the AMC flagship network.

    "We're facing a changing advertising market but we think we're positioned quite well," AMC Networks president and CEO Josh Sapan said. "We've seen healthy price increases for our originals in the upfront and a pickup in the scatter market."

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    Viacom hits record profit high for June quarter

    Michelle Clancy | 07 August 2015



    Contributing to the rush of pay-TV results, Viacom has posted a 4% increase in adjusted diluted earnings per share to $1.47, a record high for the June quarter.


    Quarterly revenues declined 11% to $3.06 billion due to lower theatrical revenues in filmed entertainment, which scheduled no wide theatrical releases in the quarter.

    Executives were nonetheless bullish: "Viacom is meeting the challenges of a rapidly-changing media landscape by creating exciting, unique content that connects with audiences on all platforms," said Sumner Redstone, executive chairman of Viacom. "Our management team is positioning Viacom for success, and I am confident that we have the strategies in place to thrive."

    Media networks revenues increased $6 million to $2.60 billion, primarily due to higher affiliate fees. Absent an unfavourable 2% impact of foreign exchange, media networks revenues increased 2%. Worldwide and domestic affiliate revenues rose 2%, driven by rate increases.

    "Our media networks are quickly bringing innovative data-based advertising products to market, broadening our sales capabilities and developing new solutions for marketing partners that capture the full scope and depth of our powerful multiplatform brands," said Philippe Dauman, president and CEO of Viacom. "We introduced several popular new series in the third quarter, including Lip Sync Battle and Scream and expanded agreements with important distribution partners. Paramount also set the stage for the return of one of the studio's most successful franchises, Mission: Impossible, and is anticipating the broadcast premiere of the first Paramount Television production, Minority Report, next month."

    Domestic affiliate revenues grew in the mid-single digits. Domestic advertising revenues decreased 9%, due to a decline in traditional ratings. Worldwide advertising revenues decreased 2%, which reflects a 58% gain in international advertising revenues driven principally by UK broadcaster Channel 5, the company said.

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    Viewster launches OTT channels

    Michelle Clancy | 07 August 2015



    Viewster has launched over-the-top (OTT) branded channels, which will bring highly curated short-form content to its global video streaming audience.


    The new content includes Mondo Media's Happy Tree Friends and Dick Figures, and additional channels featuring the bizarre and amusing facts of AllTime10s and the topical How It Should Have Ended, an on-going parody animation series that provides new endings to popular movies.

    More top-performing digital-first channels from gaming, animation and entertainment will be announced in September, the company said. All channels are available free worldwide through Viewster's advertising-supported desktop, mobile and smart TV apps, with regular updates ensuring a consistent, fresh flow of content.

    "Digital-first content, as we are now proud to offer in our branded channels, is an exciting window into the future of entertainment," said Azadeh Stoelken, director of content at Viewster. "We picked these amazing channels to complement our existing anime, science fiction and thriller offerings for our discerning and engaged audience."

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    Majority of ad buys are now multiscreen

    Michelle Clancy | 07 August 2015



    Seven out of ten advertisers are now buying multiscreen campaigns, according to data from Tremor Video's ad platform, with mobile alone accounting for half or more views on many top streaming sites, including YouTube.


    Overall, Tremor's report saw 14% growth in video views across screens, driven mainly by a 36% increase in smartphone video consumption.

    Interestingly, mobile video usage is fairly steady throughout the day. Meanwhile, desktop viewing peaks during afternoon working hours. For connected TVs, the top streaming time is prime time.

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    Foxxum signs deal for Sharp smart TVs

    UMC Slovakia and Foxxum have signed a five years exclusive contract to bring smart TV functions to Sharp TVs.

    UMC is the European Sharp license holder and as a result of the deal, Foxxum will integrate its high smart TV solution into all newly developed connected Sharp TV series sold in Europe.

    Users will gain access to a set of smart TV functions as well as an international content portfolio and local content in Europe, Latin America, Africa, Middle East and Asia. At the same time, Foxxum content partners are able to expand their reach to millions of Sharp end-user devices without an extra integration procedure.

    “We are very happy about signing Foxxum as our new smart TV solution provider. They have shown a very strong expertise to grow a successful Smart TV business together“, stated Aslan Khabliev, CEO at UMC.

    „It is an honour for us to work with an innovative brand like Sharp and we are happy to uphold
    our momentum within the professionalization process of Smart TV solutions worldwide. UMC’s long-term commitment to Foxxum for the Sharp brand in European market again confirms the leading position Foxxum hold in the market,” said Ronny Lutzi, CEO at Foxxum.

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    Bosnia finally makes DTT progress

    Bosnia & Herzegovina will shortly start on the first phase of its long-awaited transition to digital terrestrial broadcasting.

    According to Telecompaper and Al Jazeera Balkans, this follows a decision by the Council of Ministers to allocate the necessary equipment to the three state broadcasters, namely BHRT, RTRS and Federalne TV.

    The latter are now required to sign an agreement on the sign of the equipment within 30 days.

    DTT signals will initially be available in the cities of Banja Luka, Mostar and Sarajevo, before being extended to other parts of the country.

    As previously reported in Broadband TV News, Bosnia & Herzegovina is the only country in Europe not to have begun the transition to digital terrestrial broadcasting.

    The deadline for the transition had been June 17.

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    Changes at the top for Russian cableco

    The Moscow-based cable operator Komkor, which employs the brand name Akado Telekom, has made a number of senior appointments.

    Comnews reports that following the replacement of the president Viktor Koresh by Dmitry Dronov in June, Nikolay Kuzmenko has become the first deputy general director. Meanwhile, Andrei Agayev is now the director of sales and services maintenance.

    Analysts believe the appointments are unlikely to have an effect on the company’s long-term strategy. Previously, it had been thought that the senior managerial changes were setting the scene for a possible M&A.

    Akado Telekom had over 1 million pay-TV subscribers in Moscow as of last year, claiming a 19% share of the capital’s total market, including cable, DTH and IPTV.

    In St Petersburg, on the other hand, its share was less than 1%.

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    Nova eyes new sports channel

    The Czech Republic’s leading broadcaster TV Nova may shortly launch a second sports channel.

    According to Parabola, CET 21, the operator of the TV Nova group, has secured a licence from the Council of Radio and TV Broadcasting (RRTV) for a channel named Nova Sport 2.

    Valid for 12 years and covering the Czech Republic and Slovakia, it allows the service to broadcast in Czech via satellite and over the internet.

    Permission for it to operate in Slovakia with a Czech licence has been granted by the Council for Broadcasting and Retransmission (RVR), RRTV’s Slovak counterpart.

    Meanwhile, TV Nova’s current sports channel Nova Sport will be renamed Nova Sport 1.

    It has also secured a 12-year internet licence and will, be available in Czech in both the Czech Republic and Slovakia.


 

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