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CNBC Big Draw For NBCU, Comcast

NBC used to lead broadcast networks in prime time, with "Seinfeld" and "ER," but it now languishes in last place. By contrast, its cable properties are profitable, growing and now contribute 80% of the group's cash flow. It's why Comcast bought a controlling stake in NBC Universal from General Electric and Vivendi for $30bn.

NBC Universal does not disclose such numbers, but CNBC is reputed to have become its second-most lucrative channel after USA Networks, with an operating profit of between $300m and $400m. As such, it serves as a microcosm of what Comcast sees in NBC Universal. The strategy of using local partners for non-English language versions of CNBC has boosted CNBC's distribution by 80% in Asia and by 23% in Europe over five years.



Read the whole story at Financial Times »

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