Zucker Says Marketplace Has Reached Bottom
NBCU Chief says local station business showing signs of improvement
By Ben Grossman -- Broadcasting & Cable, 7/9/2009 2:14:47 PM
NBC Universal chief Jeff Zucker said Thursday that while the overall marketplace is still challenged, he thinks it may have bottomed out.
“It’s still quite uncertain and we don’t really see the full recovery we are all hoping for,” he said. “It’s still tough out there, but I think we have seen a bottom.”
Zucker added that while the overall marketplace remains very challenged, he is seeing some improvement in the station business.
“Our local television stations seem to be improving,” Zucker told CNBC’s Erin Burnett in an interview conducted in Sun Valley, Idaho, though he did not offer any specifics.
Zucker also predicted no major deals in the media space through the end of the year.
“I think this is a year about getting your house in order. I think we’ll see nothing in the media space for the rest of the year.”
Zucker also acknowledged with the upfront marketplace normally done by July 4, this year’s delayed dealings show the conversations with buyers, “are much more difficult this year.”
“I think the key word is flexibility. Both sides want flexibility and we’ll just have to see who gives,” he said.
He added that while NBC U is making money on the web, the revenues [for the media business] are “not where we expected to be today.”
Anthony Citrano - 7/10/2009 2:35:08 PM EDT
Is this guy for real? How much credence does one give to any statements attributed to Zucker when he can't even establish a solid management team at NBCU? Why is Silverman still allowed at NBC? Or is it just that Zucker (and compay) have adjusted to life on the bottom?
Yvonne - 7/10/2009 11:41:02 AM EDT
Funny you should mention Mr. Zucker and Mr. Silverman in the same sentence. To me it is the definition of "Hurbris: a term used in modern English to indicate overweening pride, superciliousness, or arrogance, often resulting in fatal retribution or nemesis.
Although Jeff Zucker was a great television producer, NBC's fortunes seem to have fallen with him in command and I tend to wonder how this new media universe would have been handled by Bob Wright, who was probably one of the best executives that the NBC/GE family ever had.
Chances are, there would have been more thought and analysis made before the gutting of local station's news operations and the implementation of NBC 2.0 or whatever the slash and burn concept of downsizing was called.
Jeff Zucker wants to be a Media Mogul in the same class as Rupert Murdoch, but Mr. Murdoch does not seem to be reactive but rather PRO-active in responding to the current marketplace.
It is a shame that Mr. Zucker is too full of himself and his title (in my opinion) instead of focussing on what drives advertising: Quality Produced CONTENT. He had done to NBC (in my opinion) what Clear Channel did to radio stations in the 1990's: Homogonized it.
The "Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien" is a glaring example. Now it appears that this once historic late night event show is now a niche programming concept to attract the all important younger demos. Oh well.
Greg Struss - 7/10/2009 1:52:13 AM EDT
Is this guy kidding? He should talk about cleaning house at that trainwreck he calls NBC; a network he and that pinhead Silverman literally destroyed in less than 4 years time.
Richard - 7/9/2009 8:07:10 PM EDT
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