Sapan: Windowing Strategy Has Helped Enhance AMC Value

Uses ‘almost surgical care’ in determining where shows end up in cycle

New York – AMC Networks CEO Josh Sapan said the cable programmer’s widowing strategy with some of its shows has not only helped drive viewership of some shows, but also has enhanced the value of the network to distributors.

Speaking at the UBS Global Media & Communications conference here, Sapan said that early on AMC recognized that viewers, especially younger viewers, tended to watch shows via subscription video on demand services and other non-linear methods. That strategy helped drive the success of shows that he said “require more attention,” like Mad Men and Breaking Bad, where viewers caught up on the series via services like Netflix. That technology trend is expected to continue he said, especially as younger viewers utilize third screens to engage with friends and other viewers as the show is being aired.

Although AMC has benefitted greatly from that strategy, Sapan said the company kept a lose eye on how it utilized those windows, adding that the idea has always been to use SVOD and services like it to drive viewers back to the linear channel. That too, he said, has added value to distributors that carry the channel.

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