Bob Pisani of CNBC writes about the early years of the business news network on its 30th anniversary.
Pisani writes, “I was offered a contract to be Real Estate Correspondent in July, 1990, a year after CNBC went on the air. I was on as a guest that first year based on a book my father and I had published the month CNBC went on the air. ‘Investing in Land: How to Be a Successful Developer’ was loosely based on the course on Fundamentals of Real Estate Development we had been teaching at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. My father had been a real estate developer in Philadelphia since the 1960s.
“Here is where I owe a big ‘Thank you!’ to the two men who took a risk and hired me: Bob Davis and David Zaslav.
“It was a slow start: we had no ratings for the first five years. None. It all started to change in 1995 and 1996: we started getting ratings, right in line with the rise in volume on the Nasdaq. It was the rise of the earliest internet stocks (think Netscape, which went public in August 1995) and it created a sensational increase in volume and intense interest from the investment public, a wave CNBC rose right to the top.
“I switched to stocks correspondent from real estate correspondent in the summer of 1997, one of the few great hunches I ever had.”
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