You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Retrans coin outpaces broadcasters’ projections

Bernstein Research report warns of pressure on MVPDs

The broadcasters may have underestimated how much they’d make from retransmission consent revenues, according to a new research report, which could ratchet up the pressure on pay-TV distributors who have to pay these fees.

While CBS Corp. previously projected that the Eye would reach $1 billion in retrans dollars by 2017, the network will likely reach that sum a year ahead of schedule. Bernstein Research estimates that Fox and ABC are likely moving at the same pace, but not NBC.

“Retrans fee increases are putting huge cost pressures on MVPDs — more than cable affiliate fees,” wrote Bernstein analyst Todd Juenger.

Retrans revenues are derived from payments distributors make to broadcasters for the rights to carry their local station signals. Broadcast networks have also been able to command a share of retrans revenue generated in recent years by their non-O&O affiliates, because it’s the network-provided programming that gives local station owners leverage in talks with MVPDs.

While at its current trajectory retrans revenues would translate to $4 per sub per month by 2025, Juenger spells out a more realistic scenario where it reaches $2 per month by that time, which still represents a healthy increase.

NBC isn’t included in the optimistic estimate because the network “seems mired down in the inter-company complications of Comcast being NBC’s biggest distributor, and the contradictory motivations and unintended consequences that causes.”

Retrans revenues could also impact the next round of negotiations between the broadcasters and pro sports leagues, writes Juenger, who theorized that the most recent deals were influenced by the windfall from distributors. “We firmly believe the new NFL deal, which increases average license fees per year from $600 million to $1 billion, would have looked very different (i.e. lower) if retrans didn’t exist,” he said.

For 2012 alone, CBS is projected to reach $250 million in retrans revenue.

More TV

  • RuPaul

    RuPaul Reveals the Queens Competing in 'RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars' Season 3

    The broadcasters may have underestimated how much they’d make from retransmission consent revenues, according to a new research report, which could ratchet up the pressure on pay-TV distributors who have to pay these fees. While CBS Corp. previously projected that the Eye would reach $1 billion in retrans dollars by 2017, the network will likely […]

  • Donald Trump

    SAG-AFTRA Supports 'Unencumbered Press' After Trump's License Revocation Threat

    The broadcasters may have underestimated how much they’d make from retransmission consent revenues, according to a new research report, which could ratchet up the pressure on pay-TV distributors who have to pay these fees. While CBS Corp. previously projected that the Eye would reach $1 billion in retrans dollars by 2017, the network will likely […]

  • Brent Briscoe Dead: 'Twin Peaks' and

    Brent Briscoe, 'Twin Peaks' and 'Parks and Recreation' Actor, Dies at 56

    The broadcasters may have underestimated how much they’d make from retransmission consent revenues, according to a new research report, which could ratchet up the pressure on pay-TV distributors who have to pay these fees. While CBS Corp. previously projected that the Eye would reach $1 billion in retrans dollars by 2017, the network will likely […]

  • 'Magnum P.I.' Reboot in Development at

    'Magnum P.I.' Reboot in Development at CBS From Peter Lenkov With Production Commitment

    The broadcasters may have underestimated how much they’d make from retransmission consent revenues, according to a new research report, which could ratchet up the pressure on pay-TV distributors who have to pay these fees. While CBS Corp. previously projected that the Eye would reach $1 billion in retrans dollars by 2017, the network will likely […]

  • YouTube logo

    TV News Roundup: YouTube Greenlights Tinder-Themed Comedy 'Swipe Right'

    The broadcasters may have underestimated how much they’d make from retransmission consent revenues, according to a new research report, which could ratchet up the pressure on pay-TV distributors who have to pay these fees. While CBS Corp. previously projected that the Eye would reach $1 billion in retrans dollars by 2017, the network will likely […]

  • THE GIFTED: L-R: Natalie Alyn Lind,

    Delayed Viewing Ratings: 'Gifted' Scores for Fox, 'Good Doctor' Stands Strong on ABC

    The broadcasters may have underestimated how much they’d make from retransmission consent revenues, according to a new research report, which could ratchet up the pressure on pay-TV distributors who have to pay these fees. While CBS Corp. previously projected that the Eye would reach $1 billion in retrans dollars by 2017, the network will likely […]

  • The Walking Dead Season 7 Mid

    Microsoft Picks Up Six-Second Ads in AMC's 'Walking Dead'

    The broadcasters may have underestimated how much they’d make from retransmission consent revenues, according to a new research report, which could ratchet up the pressure on pay-TV distributors who have to pay these fees. While CBS Corp. previously projected that the Eye would reach $1 billion in retrans dollars by 2017, the network will likely […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content