Attack coverage impacts Viacom projections

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Viacom expects round-the-clock news coverage of the last week's terrorist attacks on the CBS network to negatively impact its bottom line because of increased costs and lost ad revenues.

In a statement on Wednesday Viacom President and Chief Operating Officer Mel Karmazin said, "As a result of the attacks, we incurred a considerable increase in costs at CBS News, our local television station news operations, especially in New York, and at our major market all-news and talk radio stations."

Karmazin also said he anticipates "significant loss of revenue" from Viacom's cable networks, and radio and TV stations. He also cited the rescheduling of the Emmy Awards show, and cancellation of NFL games and the Latin Grammys as additional sources of higher costs and lost revenue.
Viacom project its full-year 2001 EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) will be "slightly higher" than last year, Karmazin said, but below its previously projected double-digit growth.
- Richard Tedesco

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