Dauman Defends Nickelodeon, Netflix Deal

Philippe-Dauman-ADespite suspected viewership concerns over Netflix, Viacom chief executive Philippe Dauman defended Nickelodeon's deal with the subscription video demand service on Thursday.

In talking with analysts during its second-quarter earnings call, Dauman says Nickelodeon viewing time spent on Netflix is only 2% of the time viewers spent with Nickelodeon on the traditional TV channel. He defends Viacom’s deal with Netflix, saying there are promotional benefits as well as monetary gains.

"We are getting nice revenues through these subscription VOD deals,” he says. “It has a minimal impact [on Nickelodeon’s TV rating erosion].”

In addition, he says Netflix only has some library content of Nickelodeon, not fresh, current TV episodes.

In the fall, Dauman alerted TV analysts about an unexplained double-digit percent decline in key kid viewer demographics. At the time, he said the issues seemed to be the question of Nielsen measurement --– something he reiterated on Thursday -- as well as possible programming issues.

“There is no silver bullet,” he said. “The Nick issue is complicated.”

On Wednesday, Time Warner chief executive officer Jeff Bewkes brought up the issue over Netflix -- that it seemingly was hurting Nickelodeon. For its part, Time Warner’s doesn’t have a Netflix deal for its Cartoon Network. Bewkes says ratings for the kids network have grown by double-digit percentages recently.

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