OLD Media Moves

The competition in TV biz news

November 13, 2009

Matt Pressman writes in the latest Vanity Fair that Fox Business Network has yet to provide stiff competition to CNBC and that the real competition may come from Bloomberg TV.

Pressman writes, “Like Fox Business, Bloomberg TV is still presumably stuck below the Nielsen threshold of 35,000, since it isn’t rated either. Just over a year ago, Bloomberg L.P., home to the news and financial-data operations that made New York’s mayor a billionaire, brought in Andy Lack, a highly regarded veteran of Sony Music and NBC News, to be the C.E.O. of the company’s TV, radio, and Web arms. Lack promptly hired David Rhodes, who was only 34 and had spent the previous 12 years at Fox News, to head Bloomberg TV in the U.S.

“‘There’s an audience that may have been with CNBC that’s going to be attracted by the kind of presentation we’re doing,’ says Rhodes, who adds that he hopes to draw audience from CNN, MSNBC, and local-TV morning programs. Like Fox, Rhodes can only refer to ‘anecdotal evidence’ that the network is connecting with viewers, but says,’We certainly are looking to gather a larger audience domestically and eventually be able to take that to advertisers.’ For now, one thing Bloomberg TV can take to advertisers is the fact that, according to a recent survey, they have the richest viewers of any channel on cable, with a median income of $156,290.

“In fact, Bloomberg TV may pose a more serious threat to CNBC than Fox Business does. While CNBC’s audience numbers dwarf those of its fledgling competitors, at any given moment there are roughly 10 times as many people watching Fox News; so CNBC’s biggest selling point with advertisers isn’t sheer numbers, it’s that its viewers are highly affluent and watch little else on TV, making them difficult to reach except through CNBC. Bloomberg is a highly respected brand name among those same wealthy business-news consumers thanks to its core product of data terminals, and if Bloomberg TV is still a bit staid, it is nevertheless a well-packaged, no-nonsense product—which may be exactly what many busy people striving to make money are looking for.”

Read more here.

Subscribe to TBN

Receive updates about new stories in the industry daily or weekly.

Subscribe to TBN

Receive updates about new stories in the industry.