Gray Television, which just completed a $3.6 billion acquisition of Raycom Media, is expanding its use of Comscore measurement services at many of its local stations.
The company, which now owns 150 affiliates of CBS, NBC, ABC and Fox, said it will use Comscore at all of the stations it owned before the acquisition and at the majority of stations that had been owned by Raycom, including one-time Raycom holdings in Cleveland and Louisville.
“Through our use of Comscore in a number of markets in recent years, we saw first-hand the accuracy and stability of Comscore’s local TV currency,” said Bob Smith, Gray’s chief operating officer, local media, in a prepared statement. “In fact, when polled, our general managers in all 57 legacy Gray markets made clear they preferred Comscore as their trusted currency – so it was an easy decision to shift all these markets to Comscore. We also have been very pleased with the agency reaction to our decision, which confirms the growing industry confidence in Comscore’s measurement methodologies both now and in the future.”
After finalizing its purchase of Raycom, Gray owns and/or operates television stations in 91 markets across the country, reaching approximately 24% of U.S. TV households. Comscore is the
exclusive ratings currency for 80 of these markets.
The news comes as Nielsen is enmeshed in negotiations with CBS Corp. over use of its data. CBS has also been using Comscore for measurement services at its local stations, according to a person familiar with the matter. Nielsen recently renewed a deal with Raycom for select TV stations in cities like New Orleans and Richmond, as well as with Hearst Television.