Comcast and CBS have signed an unusually long 10-year deal that will cover the cable operator’s retransmission fees to the network and sets the stage for Comcast customers to watch CBS content online through TV Everywhere, reports the New York Times.
While financial terms weren’t disclosed, it marks the longest content deal for CBS ever, the story says. Previously, the network had reached a five-year agreement with Time Warner Cable, which is the second-largest cable company after Comcast.
While Comcast’s current deal with CBS doesn’t expire until 2011, it comes as Comcast is seeking to buy NBC Universal, whose NBC network is one of CBS’s chief rivals, the story points out. One analyst estimated the deal would provide CBS with about 50 cents a month per subscriber from Comcast where CBS owns TV stations, which would bring the network about $75 million a year starting in 2012, but eventually double to $1 per subscriber.
The deal "says to the marketplace, ‘Yes, people are paying for retransmission,’ ” said CBS Chief Executive Leslie Moonves.