CBS Corp. Scores Big Network Ad Gains In Q4

With strong scatter advertising -- from prime time and high in-demand NFL programming -- CBS says it had near double-digit percentage advertising growth for network advertising in the fourth quarter.

CBS witnessed 8% growth in the network advertising period in the last three months of 2015, due to scatter sales.

Les Moonves, chairman, president/CEO of CBS Corp. says scatter pricing remains “way up over the upfront [of a year ago]”. He says scatter pricing gains were in the “high-teens” on a percentage basis.

Concerning the next upfront marketplace, this summer, he expects pricing to be “substantially higher than it has been in the past year.”

For the fourth quarter of 2015, overall company-wide CBS advertising activity -- including digital and its local TV stations -- only grew 1% to $2.16 billion.



Local TV stations' advertising had unfavorable comparisons due to strong fourth-quarter 2014 ad results, which included higher political advertising revenue. Total local broadcasting revenue -- TV and radio stations -- sank 8% to $719 million during the fourth quarter. CBS television stations' revenues declined 11%, while CBS radio revenues were down 5%.

Overall, CBS Corp. revenue improved 6% to $3.91 billion. Entertainment revenues climbed 9% to $2.46 billion; content licensing and distribution was up 16% to $1.01 billion; and affiliate/subscription revenues gained 13% to $680 million.

CBS expects to pull in $1 billion in retrans fees for its TV stations in 2016 -- projecting to get to $2 billion in 2020.

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