Retransmission consent fees will account for nearly 10% of
total local television station revenue by 2018, according to a recent report by
research firm BIA/Kelsey.
In its report, BIA/Kelsey estimated that gross retrans
fees will more than double between 2012 ($2.23 billion) and 2017 ($4.69
billion), while the amount of those fees the local stations keep after
returning a portion to their respective networks, will climb 68% from $1.4
billion in 2012 to $2.35 billion by 2017.
Also according to BIA Kelsey, retransmission consent fees
will make up 9.5% of local stations' total revenue, up from 6.5% in 2012.
Retransmission consent fees have become an increasingly
important second revenue stream for local stations, BIA/Kelsey vice president
and chief economist Mark Fratrik said in an interview. He added that the money
from retransmission consent helps support investments in programming.
"It [retrans] helps them reinvest in
programming, not only syndicated programming, but local news," Fratrik said.
"It makes them a more effective competitor against other media."