Even with suggestions that the ad market has slowed, Discovery CFO Andy Warren said business is “still robust” and “the market is
strong” at the company. He indicated that the fourth-quarter scatter market is healthy. It will be helped by tightness created by inventory sold in the upfront.
At Discovery, significant ad sales growth could come from the ID network with its ratings growth, although that may take some time, since the network’s base prices may trail competitor rates.
“Clearly, the CPM and ad sales are lagging … it will take several years for the pricing to match the heft of that network,” Warren said at an investor event.
Discovery is also looking to rebranded Destination America to improve on the so-so performance of predecessor Planet Green.
The company has deals to offer library content with Netflix and Amazon, but Warren said “we want to maintain and will maintain our ecosystem with our affiliates. We’re not seeing any degradation of our on-air performance based on those deals.”
As for OWN, the Oprah Winfrey Network, he said it is “right on track with our expectations” and remains headed for solid financials in the second-half of 2013.
The 3D network, 3net -- owned by Discovery, Sony and IMAX -- is yielding minimal revenues, but Warren said that should be helped when 3D TVs, where no special glasses are required for viewing, spread widely.
“It's really all about glasses-free, when does glasses-free really take off,” he said.