Local TV Station Retrans Revs Climb, But Slow Rise For Digital Ads

This year, local TV stations will pull in gross retransmission revenue equating to roughly half of what they get from advertising sales.

A recent presentation at a TV conference by S&P Global Market Intelligence estimated TV stations will get $9.3 billion in retrans fees this year.

According to other estimates -- BIA/Kelsey, the media research company is more optimistic. It forecasts that advertising revenues for TV stations will be around $19.8 billion this year, down 4.1% from a year ago.

TV network affiliates stations typically hand over a large piece of retrans revenues to their TV network partners. S&P Global Market Intelligence says carriage fees for TV stations will account for 30% of total station revenue -- growing to 35% in 2023.

Overall, local TV stations retrans revenues will grow to $12.8 billion in 2023.

BIA/Kelsey said total revenue for TV stations -- retrans fees, traditional over-the-air advertising sales and digital revenue -- will total $28.08 billion in 2017 -- down 2% from 2016, a year of big ad growth due to Olympics and political advertising. This will rise to $32.78 billion in 2020.

Digital advertising sales are slowly growing, says BIA/Kelsey -- expected to be up 8.8% to $1.09 billion this year over 2016.

1 comment about "Local TV Station Retrans Revs Climb, But Slow Rise For Digital Ads ".
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  1. Ed Papazian from Media Dynamics Inc, June 19, 2017 at 1:57 p.m.

    For those who are not digging deeper into the figures, we estimate that the broadcast TV networks will garner $3.5 billion as their share of the ststion retransmission fees this year---adding about 23-24% to their national ad revenues. In addition they will sell about $2.5 billion of ads in their digital venues ( this includes owned cable channels ) and they will share heavily in the often huge syndication rerun profits earned by their primetime seriesĀ  producer "partners". Finally, the networks will add still more incomes via their share of the new "skinny" packages' subscriber fees. In other words, the broadcast networks, as national content providers are no longer dependent 100% on nationally placed ad dollars. Moreover, as corporations, they have extremely profitable TV O&Os as well as cable channels. They are sitting pretty, folks---18-49 rating declines notwithstanding.

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