Fox Completes Upfront With 6% To 8% Gains

Fox Networks Group has completed its upfront advertising deals, and was on par with other TV networks' pricing gains -- but not necessarily with total dollar volume.

For both the Fox broadcasting network and its cable networks, Fox earned 6% to 8% gains on pricing -- the cost per thousand viewers (CPMs). Total revenue was similar to a year ago, according to media executives. A year ago, Fox pulled in an estimated $1.55 billion in upfront dollar volume.

Major networks and network groups such as CBS, Disney-ABC and Viacom completed their upfront advertising sales earlier this year. They also earned mid-to-high (6% to 8%) pricing gains, with higher volume than a year ago.

Unlike other networks, media agency analysts say many Fox advertisers put in fewer dollars in the upfront to allow for greater flexibility -- and pricing -- in the scatter market.  

Major advertising categories that showed gains for Fox included consumer packaged goods, pharmaceutical and fast-food restaurants.



Fox would not comment about its upfront sales activity.

Last year was a strong year for all TV networks, which saw average higher pricing gains of 8% to 11%. Networks also witnessed around 4.5% more in overall dollar volume versus 2015, at $18.61 billion. That amounted to $9.86 billion for cable networks and $8.75 billion for the broadcast networks. 

Networks were estimated to have sold 73% to 77% of their TV advertising inventory.

Fox Networks Group's digital advertising grew 40% for all its products, including sponsored VOD streams. For its top cable network FX, Fox’s upfront digital ad commitments more than doubled over 2016.

Fox also saw gains in sports -- especially football. This included the NFL and college football, especially the network's Big Ten package. For the NFL, Fox saw more than 30% of its advertisers agreeing to use Nielsen’s OOH measure.

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