OLD Media Moves

Murdoch discusses Fox Business, Wall Street Journal

November 6, 2008

On News Corp.’s third quarter earnings conference call Wednesday, CEO Rupert Murdoch was asked about the performance of some of its business journalism operations, including Fox Business Network and The Wall Street Journal.

On the losses from Fox Business, which celebrated its one-year anniversary last month, Murdoch said, “Our position is yes, it will probably cost us best part of $60 million to $70 million this year. We are fighting very hard for greater distribution. We are achieving it slowly. And when we get over 50 million subscribers, we will turn on a lot more heat, we will turn better programs and we think we will be much more aggressive in getting advertising. But I think that’s another year to two years away.”

When asked about the revenue being generated from The Journal’s Web site, Murdoch stated, “I’d just say the big profit measure which is going to be the website is the one website that people charge for, people are very happy to pay for. We are getting it. I better be careful what I say and much sure the exactly figure, probably a $100 million in subscriptions there. And that certainly is over $100 million in advertising on that one website. Then, of course, that’s really only half the business, the paper and the website.

“The other half is the special news services, the indexes and various and very specialized financial services which we keep developing because of state of the financial industry in this country, we are putting even more emphasis than normal on international expansion.”

Read the full transcript here.

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