Media Moves

How Bloomberg sells its content to other media

December 7, 2015

Posted by Chris Roush

Bloomberg Content Service, Bloomberg Media’s licensing and distribution business, provides Bloomberg terminals and business and financial news, photos, video, and data to publishers, broadcasters, and other companies in more than 70 countries around the world.

Josh Rucci Official HeadshotJosh Rucci, who has been a key contributor to its success in producing double-digit sales growth annually since 2012, was recently promoted to general manager & global head of the business. Prior to joining Bloomberg in 2012, Rucci held leadership positions at Getty Images, ESPN and Reuters, working in locations around the world.

Bloomberg Content Service has expanded rapidly over the last couple of years — both in platform offerings and internationally. Most recently in November, the team launched Bloomberg TV Canada, bringing business and financial TV to more than 7 million Canadian households.

Also this year, Bloomberg Content Service signed group licensing deals with Hearst Newspapers, American City Business Journals and the McClatchy Co., for use of Bloomberg terminals and syndicated content across multiple print and digital properties.

And Monday, Bloomberg announced an agreement with MSNBC in which it will re-air Bloomberg Television’s flagship political show “With All Due Respect” beginning in early January.

Rucci spoke by email with Talking Biz News about Bloomberg’s licensing and distribution business. What follows is an edited transcript.

Bloomberg started in the 1990s by providing its content for free to newspapers. So what’s changed with content services in the last 20 years?

As the media landscape continues to evolve, so has content creation and syndication, especially over the last 20 years. More companies are licensing content to add breadth and depth for their audiences, and are seeking partners with significant capabilities to deliver this content easily and at scale.

Bloomberg’s media distribution business has greatly expanded since the 1990s, in terms of platform, content categories, and customer types. Today, for example, we provide text, photos, videos and graphics for print, digital, and broadcast syndication. We’ve enhanced content delivery to support customer workflows, launching MRSS feeds and a digital content portal.

We’ve also extended our high-quality financial and business news coverage into areas such as technology, politics, and luxury. In addition, organizations outside of traditional publishing are keen to work with us, including educational firms, digital signage companies, and content marketers. Those are some of the major changes.

What’s the importance of getting Bloomberg content placed in other media?

Having distribution relationships is a win-win situation for us and our partners. Extending our reach also helps us drive influencers to engage with Bloomberg. For publishers and broadcasters, they have access to a broad breadth of coverage from 150 news bureaus in 73 countries around the world.

Where do you see the biggest growth areas going forward?

Video has been a huge growth area for us. The combination of our assets–ranging from raw video and digital clips to full-length originals–is compelling for video producers and distributors alike. Bloomberg has seen tremendous growth in video over the past year, becoming No. 1 in the global business and finance category for three months in a row this past summer.

As video demand continues to rise among media companies, and producers look to satisfy audiences on high-growth platforms including smartphones and connected televisions, we want to remain the most valuable source of business video.

Bloomberg has had content deals with the San Francisco Chronicle and Washington Post in the past to produce business sections. Are those types of deals still of interest?

We continue to explore branded partnerships on a global basis. Recent examples include the launch of a co-branded business site in Brazil ( and the launch of Bloomberg TV Canada in November. We look at these selectively to support broader company growth strategies in key markets.

Beside text stories, what other types of content are you providing?

We are the only global business media company that is fully multi-platform. We have digital properties, a global television network, magazines, radio, live events and, of course, the Bloomberg Terminal, which is used in more than 300 client newsrooms. These assets enable us to provide services to both content creators and distributors.

So you’ll see a lot of different types of content, including a leading photo service, raw and produced video, a linear television stream, and graphics tool, available for syndication across any platform. Additionally, our text output continues to expand, now including Bloomberg Pursuits luxury content and a new fast commentary service in Bloomberg Gadfly.

Bloomberg Content ServiceAre there new ways of presenting content that other media outlets want from Bloomberg?

Integration across content types — e.g., text and photos, or text and video – -is of increasing importance. Our editorial and R&D teams are heavily focused on enhancing our platforms to allow search, preview, and download access for all of our verticals. The launch of our MediaSource portal in 2014 was the first step in this; we are prepared to aggressively innovate in this area to utilize new technology and simplify our clients’ access to our array of content.

I’ve seen a lot of media pull back on international coverage. Is that something that you’re having success selling to clients?

Having more than 150 bureaus globally — producing news and media content in nine languages — is advantageous. We are committed to being the leading global provider of content in our areas of strength.

How does Bloomberg content help a media publication, whether online or in print?

Bloomberg offers geographic breath and vertical depth for any outlet seeking to engage global business professionals. This starts with Bloomberg terminal, which is an outstanding research tool used by hundreds of business journalists. And beyond the quality and breadth of our content, part of our appeal is the effort we put into our tagging and packaging — on the terminal as well as for syndicated video, photos and text. In short, we are committed to supporting licensors from both a content and operational perspective.

Would Bloomberg ever consider producing content in tandem with another media organization?

Several of our international partnerships have co-production elements, driven by integrated newsrooms. This has played an important role in expanding our international footprint.

In the past few years, we’ve formed local television partnerships in Canada, Mexico, Malaysia, Philippines, Bulgaria, Mongolia, India and other countries. Most notably with the recent launch of Bloomberg TV Canada, we have partner staff sitting in our newsroom in Toronto.

What’s the biggest hurdle you face in selling content?

Inertia. Many publishers have been working with the same suppliers for years. We are significantly investing in content expansion and workflow tools to be the go-to solution for global media outlets.

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