|HOME||MEDIAVILLAGE.com||WOMEN ADVANCING||HOOKED UP||MEMBERSHIP INFO||MEMBER COMPANIES||MEDIA BUSINESS REPORT||ECONOMIC FORECASTS||RESEARCH|
Published: December 5, 2011 at 11:56 AM GMT
Last Updated: July 31, 2013 at 11:56 AM GMT
The holidays came early to investors as the markets ramped up into December. The last five trading days have pushed the S&P 500 up over 7%, although Friday's closing suggested the potential for a downward adjustment this week. Media firms also participated in the rally, with the group rising by a similar amount.
Smartphone developer Research in Motion's (RIMM) stock continues to struggle, hitting a 5-year low this week even as the market rallied. The jury is out whether the firm will remake itself as the next PALM (not necessarily a good thing) but it's becoming increasingly clear that Apple's iPhone and Google's Android platform are eating RIM's lunch. RIM has just not been able to capitalize on the popularity of its instant messaging platform among young people.
While much of Wall Street has soured on the previously high-flying RIM, they sing a different tune when it comes to Internet radio pioneer and recent IPO, Pandora Media (P). The darling of most media analysts has seemed to almost get a free pass from the industry, according to EVP/Radio Analysis and Insights for Katz Radio Group, Mary Beth Garber.
In an article published on Radio Ink this week, Garber questioned the motivation of the media's love fest with Pandora. "It would make a great project for a Social Sciences class—how various press and bloggers, with rare exception, have simply accepted Pandora's claims, skepticism-free, and then proceeded to exaggerate them even further," she wrote. Pandora's stock hasn't reflected the media's approach, though -- it's down 40% from its first day of trading.
Black Friday has Internet media players seeing green, as all kinds of records were set on the first day of shopping for the 2011-2012 holiday season. According to the National Retail Federation, a record 226 million shoppers hit the stores and websites over Black Friday weekend, with the average shopper spending 9.3% more to about $400 and pushing the total spending to a record $52.4 billion.
Online retailing giant Amazon.com (AMZN) definitely had its hand in these record volumes, experiencing strong demand of its new tablet, the Kindle Fire. Barclays analyst, Anthony DiClemente wrote to clients this week that he believes the tablet's success is based off its "strong value proposition for consumers...in an underserved market looking for a quality tablet at a low price point."
Amazon reported that its Kindle family of devices sold 4x what it did last Black Friday, with the new Fire tablet topping its bestselling list on its website. Brick and mortar retailers also saw good sell through -- as Best Buy and Target reported strong sales of the devices. Some industry analysts believe that Amazon has already sold over 2 million Fire tablets.
Basketball fans had reason to cheer over Thanksgiving as the NBA and the players' union reached an agreement to terminate the league's lockout after 149 days. The league is set to play an abbreviated season, tipping off on Christmas Day. Barclays Anthony DiClemente sees the new deal as "a small positive for Time Warner (TWX) and likely neutral for Disney (DIS)", lifting any overhang on both stocks caused by the lockout. Close to $800 million in ad revenues were at stake, small in comparison to the $3 billion spent on football but not insignificant for the networks. Barclays believes that the networks may also see a pro-rata refund for the games not played or rights on additional games given as compensation for the shortened-season.
Wall Street was almost as excited for Disney's (DIS) dividend increase this week as they were for the firm's new installment of The Muppets, which opened to $40 million in its first five days of release. The media conglomerate boosted its dividend by 50%, prompting Lazard Capital's Barton Crockett to read through positive signs to a general economic rebound in the media sector. "The dividend news allows investors to draw a broader conclusion about the economic outlook. We take that as a clear sign that Disney sees a healthy business and no double dip on the horizon," he said this week.
Bloomberg broke the story that Yahoo might see a buyout bid from an investor group led by Chinese Internet firm, Alibaba. This deal would see all of Yahoo change hands, as opposed to previously announced deals for just pieces of the firm. If this deal is consummated, Blackstone and Bain would take control of the U.S. operations of the firm while Alibaba would buy back the stake in its own company that Yahoo already owns. Japan's Softbank would also participate, buying a stake in Yahoo Japan. Yahoo's stock rose almost 5% on the news. Many investors are skeptical that Yahoo will succeed in selling itself. The off-again-on-again process has hurt the company as the core business continues to erode. Even more unclear is who the actual winning suitor might be.
Regardless, most analysts agree that there is value to be unlocked through a deal for Yahoo. Ken Sena, an analyst at Evercore Partners Inc., estimates Yahoo's worth $18 a share, with $5 coming from the U.S. Internet business. The so-called off-balance-sheet assets -- including the Asian investments -- are worth $11 a share, plus $2 in cash, he said.
Media investors will get an inside glimpse of the future of the industry next week as the "longest running show on Wall Street" -- the UBS Global Media and Communications conference -- kicks off. Top executives from leading media firms like Netflix (NFLX), Discovery Communications (DISCA), and Viacom (VIA) will present on the current state of the industry. "What are the important trends in video consumption, distribution and monetization?" will also be a recurring theme, according to UBS' Aryeh Bourkoff.
A strong trading week follows strong holiday spending data. Investors are still cautious to see how media firms will fare in an uncertain economic environment.
You are receiving this e-mail as a corporate subscriber to Jack Myers Media Business Report. Re-distribution in any form, except among approved individuals within your company, is prohibited. As a subscriber you have full access to all archives and reports at www.jackmyers.com. If you require your ID and password, contact email@example.com
"TREotM": The Seventies (with Coax)
Chapter 10, Part 5
Who Controls the Digital Eco-System?
Ever since the first man clicked on the first ever online ad, and the first blogger penned the first essay on all that’s wrong with everything digital, one question has under-pinned much of the discussion and debate. Who’s in charge?
PBS’ “Poldark”: An Improbable Summer Sensation
A best in show has emerged from television’s busiest summer ever. The distinction may strike some as improbable during the season in which popcorn entertainment generally rules. This fine program has nothing to do with aliens, zombies, cops or killers. It is a first-class remake of a historical drama from the Seventies that probably sounds like a snooze. And while such declarations are generally a matter of individual taste, from where I sit it’s more entertaining than anything else on broadcast, cable or stream right now.
ARF Rocks Research World with Measurement Mandate
This year’s ARF Audience Measurement Conference, a top research-oriented conference, focused two of its 2 ½ days on the challenges in cross platform measurement. Cross platform continues to be a major initiative of an industry that has historically focused predominantly on television. But the days of linear TV dominating the discussion and the historical buying and selling of spots and dots is just about over.
Sold-Out ARF Conference Incites Industry Action
“Who sells out a research conference?” asked Advertising Research Foundation (ARF) CEO and President Gayle Fuguitt to the, yes, sold-out audience at the Foundation’s recent Audience Measurement Conference held at the sleek Conrad Hotel in Manhattan’s Battery Park City.
Data, Data Everywhere in the Upfront: An Overview -- Part 5
This is the fifth and final part of a series examining the new data initiatives of major data companies. Parts 1 through 4 outlined the many data initiatives, their scalability, whether their services were gaining traction in the industry and the issue of a standard metric to link systems and platforms. Here, I ask about the role of research in the Era of Data. Is its role changing? Is there a future for research as we know it?
CARPE DIEM: Advertising and the Media
Published on Apr 13, 2015
Broadcast Milestone: A Summer Stunner
It’s the first week of summer, and didja notice? Something rather remarkable happened last night. CBS, NBC and ABC offered three hours of original series programming. Further, Fox’s two hours were filled with original shows and one-half of The CW’s two-hour primetime block was occupied by a brand new episode of a long-running series.
Hard Truths from Universal McCann’s David Cohen
When a senior advertising executive who handles money matters appears at an industry event and speaks his mind in a public forum, as Universal McCann Chief Investment Officer David Cohen did at last week's Online Video Advertising Summit here in New York, everyone should pay attention.
Capturing Your Consumers in the First 5 Seconds
This week, we are celebrating the endless creativity of the advertising and marketing worlds at Cannes International Festival of Creativity. We’re really excited to recognize and revisit this year’s slew of brilliant campaigns on Cannes’ international stage. There are so many great contenders -- the ads that moved people to tears, others that made them laugh and of course those that inspired them to take action.
Video of the Week: Jon Stewart's Quiet Expression of Outrage
Jon Stewart on Thursday night opened his Comedy Central program “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” in serious commentator mode, talking about the mass murder the night before at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina.
Pride Report: Rainbows Over Madison Avenue May Lead to Pots of Gold
In their never-ending efforts to sell, sell, sell, advertisers long have found inspiration in the calendar, borrowing interest from holidays such as Valentine's Day, St. Patrick's Day, the Fourth of July, Halloween and, of course, Christmas. In recent years, reflecting the increasing diversity of the consumers they seek to reach, advertisers have added Dr. King's Birthday and Cinco de Mayo.
Elon Musk: The Edison/Tesla/Ford of the Digital Age
I have been an admirer, yes, even a fan of Elon Musk ever since I first learned about Tesla Motors ten years ago. I state that because now it seems that Elon Musk is everywhere in the media -- online, magazines, a best-selling biography (which I have purchased but have yet to start) -- simply because he is out to change the world and people are finally taking notice.
Remembering Ralph Roberts
Ralph Roberts was one of the good guys. Along with Bill Daniels, Bill Brazeal, J. C. Sparkman, Irving Kahn and Bill Bresnan he was always ready to lend a guiding hand to those of us who were (in the late 1960s, some years after Ralph bought his first system in Tupelo Mississippi) new to the industry. I remember Ralph with special fondness as he accepted my early long-haired, hippie journalist persona, inviting me (off the record) to join his annual dinner with his top guys, including the late Dan Aaron (who had been the selling negotiator in Tupelo) and the great Julian Brodsky, his financiers and, after a couple dinners, Brian, too. I was privileged to learn a lot that way.
Rehabilitating a Fragile Direct Response TV Ecosystem
“Whenever possible, one should focus on removing fragilizing interdependencies rather than imposing additional structure and activity that will only increase the fragility of the system as a whole.” -- Nassim Taleb, Rupert Read and Yaneer Bar-yam; from the paper, Precautionary Principle*