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Wall St. Speaks Out: Groundhog Day for TV Advertising - Pivotal Research
By: Brian Wieser   (01/30/2015)

Monday is Groundhog Day, which seems as good a time as any to ponder the year ahead for owners of media properties focused on national TV advertising sales. Will the shadow of weak recent results for advertising loom large in the year ahead and result in a demoralizing repeat of 2014 for sellers of TV ad inventory? Or will the cyclical nature of marketing mean that new budgets – if not new marketers – allow the industry to break free of last year's trends to witness a flowering of growth once again?

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Wall St. Speaks Out on Key Takeaways from NATPE - RBC Capital Markets, LLC
By: David Bank   (01/23/2015)

Local TV Advertising Appears to Have Accelerated Sequentially. Core local spot TV advertising (ex-political) was down mid-teens in October as political displaced core business, with November improving to being flattish Y/Y and improvement also projected to have occurred in December.

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Wall St. Speaks Out on FB, Google, Twitter & Yahoo - Pivotal Research
By: Brian Wieser   (01/22/2015)

Price target changes were primarily a function of changes to costs of capital embedded in our models which we have incorporated across our coverage universe. In our valuation framework, lower long-term costs of capital (driven at this time by falling yields on long-term treasury bonds) disproportionately impact companies whose stock prices are disproportionately dependent upon their terminal values. Each of Facebook, Google, Twitter and Salesforce.com remain as Buy-rated. We continue to rate Yahoo Hold, although we note that a majority of its value is dependent upon the value of Alibaba.

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Wall St. Speaks Out on Mobile Marketing: Still Early Innings for Brands - Pivotal Research
By: Brian Wieser   (01/20/2015)

For well over a decade, many pundits and practitioners within the advertising industry would claim that "next year is the year of mobile advertising." Over the past two years a case could be made that the year for mobile advertising finally arrived. As an increasing share of advertisements running on Facebook, Twitter and Google are executed on mobile devices, it is technically true that mobile advertising is growing rapidly, as each of these companies capture a growing share of digital media budgets.

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Wall St Speaks Out on Netflix OTT, Roku 4K, Facebook Video & DVD Sales - Janney/MediaEntertainment
By: Tony Wible   (01/16/2015)

NFLX usage is increasing, with 36% of subs using the service daily in 2014, and 72% using it weekly, according to Leichtman Research Group. Usage has increased since 2010 when only 10% streamed daily and 43% weekly, although this is likely mostly driven by the amount of content now available. We suspect that the increased amount of children's content is also a driver. Daily usage is slightly lower for subs that also subscribe to pay TV (32%). Penetration among pay TV subs is 36%, and 48% among non-pay TV subs, implying that consumers substitute the two services. We believe that the pay TV subscriber base will continue to face pressure from on-demand alternatives, including SVOD and online video.

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Wall St. Speaks Out on 2015 Ad Tech Realities - Brian Wieser, Pivotal Research
By: Brian Wieser   (01/14/2015)

2015 is shaping up to be the most significant year for ad tech yet. Significant as in very eventful for all, lucrative for some and dismal (if not terminal) for others.

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Wall St. Speaks Out on Network TV Market Activity - RBC Capital Markets, LLC
By: David Bank   (01/13/2015)

Network TV Channel Checks Incrementally Positive – We have completed a number of discussions with influential ad buyers and sellers in the Network TV space this week. We come away from them encouraged that activity has perked up in the market place over the past two weeks and some pricing power for sellers has followed.

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Wall St Speaks Out on CES Take-Aways - Barclays
By: Chris Merwin   (01/09/2015)

We attended the CES conference in Las Vegas this week and while a lot was the same as past years – IoT, connected cars, 4k, etc. – a few things were different. Virtual Reality, and in particular Oculus, seemed to be a bigger focus this year, as did all types of robotics, like drones. In addition to touring the showroom floor, we attended several panels on emerging trends in advertising and gaming. Advertising panelists seemed to be in agreement that a lot of marketers and agencies still have a lot to learn when it comes to building a brand in an increasingly digital world where consumer behavioral patterns are constantly changing. It seems clear, however, that more brand advertising dollars need to shift online to the largest publishers like FB (covered by Paul Vogel / Overweight), commensurate with the audience migration that has already taken place. For the gaming industry, panelists had mixed views on whether or not there will be another console cycle, but either way, we think the increasing number of distribution formats, like mobile, should be a positive for the largest game publishers

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Wall St. Speaks Out on the Worst Christmas Gift Ever
By: Brian Wieser   (12/23/2014)

The recent hack of Sony's IT systems has been one of the most important news items related to the media industry – and industries of all kinds – for many years. The implications of this event for Sony alone are significant of course, ranging from the effect on the box office outcomes for several films to the future relationships its executives have with employees and other industry partners. Unfortunately for them, the damage from the attack will continue to play out in slow motion for the company and for the employees whose personal information was divulged. However, for as bad as this news is, there are even bigger issues to consider which relate to the forced transparency of the inner-workings of individual companies.

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Wall St. Speaks Out: 12 Predictions for 2015
By: Brian Wieser   (12/19/2014)

Twelve Pivotal Predictions for 2015 - Brian Wieser, Pivotal Research

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Super Bowl XLIX is about to remind everyone, yet again, that the biggest football game of the year is a cultural phenomenon that drives massive engagement. It attracts approximately 110 million people (about 46% of American households) during game time on TV, with this number of viewers remaining roughly the same, year over year (source: Nielsen). On YouTube, however, engagement with the event is dramatically expanding. More and more people are not only watching the game on TV, but also turning to platforms like YouTube to search for a huge variety of Super Bowl-related content. For example, we see 5x growth in world-wide search interest for the Super Bowl on YouTube in the month of January.

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For all the fuss last year about the current round of musical chairs among CBS’ late night talk shows – Ferguson is gone, Letterman is leaving, Corden is on deck, Colbert is coming – surprisingly little attention is being paid to something the network is doing right now … keeping “The Late Late Show” alive during the approximately three month gap between Craig Ferguson’s departure and James Corden’s arrival (on March 23) with special guest hosts typically sitting in for two or three days each. This week has featured a two-night stint by Regis Philbin, a man with more experience hosting talk shows than most, and another (concluding tonight) by actress and comedienne Whitney Cummings.

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