Fox News Scores Victory With Cablevision
October 17, 2006 3:49 PM
The Fox News Channel, which just turned 10 years old, has reason to celebrate, having just cut a hefty carriage renewal deal with multiple-system operator Cablevision Systems for more than 75 cents per subscriber, according to published reports.
That’s far more than what industry speculators were wagering just weeks earlier because Fox, which was getting 25 cents per subscriber when it first launched, is now seeking a hefty $1 per subscriber. Most mavens had bet that Fox would get 55 cents to 60 cents per subscriber, reasoning that because the lower-rated CNN gets about 50 cents per subscriber, Fox should do a little better. All pointed to how Cablevision could play hardball during negotiations and expected a prolonged battle with Fox.
Well, that turned out to be a short-term battle of the wills. While that is a significant and well-deserved victory for Fox given its rapid growth from nowhere, remember Cablevision is relatively small potatoes. The MSO only serves 3 million subscribers and might not be a harbinger of what lies ahead. Coming up will be more protracted negotiations, I would gamble, when Fox deals with the nation’s largest MSO, Comcast Cable Communications, with its some 23 million subscribers, and Time Warner Cable, the second-largest MSO, with its 14.4 million subscribers. Any other wagerers out there?