Bob Iger To Forgo Disney Salary, Execs Take Pay Cuts

The Walt Disney Co. said on Monday that executive chairman Robert Iger will forgo his entire salary and recently named CEO Bob Chapek will take a 50% pay cut amid the coronavirus pandemic, according to an email from Chapek sent to employees obtained by The Hollywood Reporter.

DMA 73: SPRINGFIELD, MO

Mike Spruill Named GM Of KRBK-KOZL

Nexstar chooses the veteran broadcasting executive with more than 30 years of sales experience to lead its Fox-MNT duopoly in Springfield, Mo., following the retirement of Leo Henning.

WOW! CEO Teresa Elder Hospitalized With COVID-19

BRAND CONNECTIONS

Media Outlets In Austin Come Together For COVID-19 Community Relief

DMA 7: WASHINGTON

WTTG Confronts Coronavirus With Steady Hand

A solid business contingency plan gave Fox-owned WTTG and WDCA in Washington, D.C., a leg up in pivoting for the coronavirus pandemic. VP and GM Patrick Paolini says a priority now is staying on top of the news deluge while keeping staffers and advertisers calm amid the uncertainty.

Tegna Bidders Drop Out Following Coronavirus

The TV group says two of the four unsolicited acquisition proposals have been withdrawn in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic and the other two parties have not signed confidentiality agreements to enable due diligence and have not delivered any information on financing sources.

Visa Extends Athlete Sponsorship To 2021

The credit card giant’s Team Visa scheme features 96 athletes across 27 sports, including soccer star Megan Rapinoe, gymnast Simone Biles — a quadruple gold medalist at the Rio de Janeiro Games — and two-time defending 800-meter Olympic champion David Rudisha.

Jay Rodriguez, Former NBC VP, Dies

Jay Rodriguez, a former vice president of corporate information West Coast for NBC, has died. He was 92.

MARKET SHARE

WRAL Raises $275,000 For Raleigh Restaurants

“We recognize that part of our role as a locally owned and operated television station is to support and help neighbors and businesses in need,” said Joel Davis, WRAL general manager.

WarnerMedia Sets Up $100M Relief Fund

WarnerMedia has pledged to give $100 million in relief to workers affected by production shutdowns forced by the coronavirus pandemic, CEO John Stankey said in an internal memo on Friday.

Trump Signs $2.2T Stimulus Legislation

Acting with unity and resolve unseen since the 9/11 attacks, Washington moved urgently to stem an economic free fall caused by widespread restrictions meant to slow the spread of the virus that have shuttered schools, closed businesses and brought American life in many places to a virtual standstill.

CLOSING BELL

Dow Slides 915, Nasdaq Loses 295

Stocks dropped Friday, but held on to weekly gains after a big rally. Stocks had soared over the previous three days as the relief bill moved closer to becoming law. It passed the House Friday afternoon and President Donald Trump signed it later in the day.

DMA 27: RALEIGH-DURHAM, NC

Shuneca Harrington Named WRAL Sales Director

TV Sales veteran Shuneca Harrington has been named director of sales at Capitol Broadcasting’s NBC affiliate WRAL Raleigh-Durham-Fayetteville (DMA 27), effective April 20. She is joining from WRBL Columbus, Ga., where she led the sales team. Harrington started her career as an account executive in Raleigh and quickly became digital sales manager before being promoted […]

ViacomCBS Parent Amends Credit Deal

National Amusements, ViacomCBS Inc.’s parent company is losing some of its ability to borrow money at a time when its key revenue drivers — movie theaters, new film releases and live-sports broadcasts from the CBS network — have ground to a halt because of the coronavirus. The company has reached a deal with Wells Fargo & Co. to restructure its credit facilities.

Amazon Surprisingly Lags Competitors

Web trackers see Amazon flat or trailing rivals as a survey data show sales declines in many categories — and yet, an influx of direct-to-consumer brands is driving up ad costs.

Scripps Fund To Provide Virus Assistance

Qualified Scripps employees can apply for up to $1,000 for eligible expenses related to hardships caused by COVID-19.

House Passes $2.2T Rescue Package

The House approved the sweeping measure by a voice vote, as strong majorities of both parties lined up behind the most colossal economic relief bill in the nation’s history.

Major Brand Pulls Ads From Virus Content

The coronavirus pandemic has inspired an unprecedented surge in news readership. But it hasn’t created a concurrent surge in advertising revenue — starving news organizations of the resources they desperately need in a time of crisis. Advertisers are pulling back what they are spending, and refusing to allow their ads to be placed next to stories that report on the pandemic.

NBCU Launches COVID-19 PSA Campaign

The series of spots will feature Kelly Clarkson, Andy Cohen, Savannah Guthrie, Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen and many more, in partnership with the Ad Council, CDC, HHS and the White House.

WGCL Atlanta Has 2 Employees With COVID-19

Two unnamed employees at Meredith’s Atlanta CBS affiliate have tested positive for the coronavirus. “Both individuals are doing well,” according to a station statement.

The Bill For Canceling March Madness Arrives

The cancellation of March Madness because of the coronavirus pandemic has dealt a costly blow to college sports programs, the National Collegiate Athletic Association indicated on Thursday. The NCAA said that financial distributions to Division I member institutions at the end of the 2019-20 academic year would be $225 million — just 37.5% of the expected $600 million amount.

GM Furloughs 6,500 In U.S.

The automaker is also suspending work on some vehicle programs and said salaried employees will recover lost earnings in a lump-sum payment within a year. Senior executives will see deeper pay cuts on top of the 20 percent deferment as the company scrambles to preserve cash.

Traditional Media Ad Sales Seen Falling 12%

Ad revenue for traditional “linear” media could fall as much as 12% in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic, while digital media advertising could still rise more than 4%, according to a new forecast from Interpublic Group’s media-research unit Magna.

LPTVs To Get Most Repack Money Up Front

The FCC’s Incentive Auction Task Force and Media Bureau have determined the amount of relocation funds they will give to qualified low-power TV stations and translators impacted by the broadcast incentive auction repack and said they will get 85% of that money out ASAP.

JESSELL AT LARGE

Jessell At Large | Spot TV Faces An Unprecedented Moment

The coronavirus has caused massive collateral damage to the economy, taking down with it initially rosy predictions for spot advertising in 2020. But one bright spot on the horizon is that political dollars still will come, and broadcasters have the solace of diversified revenue thanks to retransmission consent to spare them an even crueler blow.

CLOSING BELL

Dow Advances 1,352, Nasdaq Gains 413

Stocks surged again Thursday after Senate passage of the coronavirus relief bill. The S&P 500 rose 6.2%, bringing its three-day rally to 17.6%. The Dow industrials have risen an even steeper 21.3% since Monday.

Upfront Timetable In Doubt

As buyers and media companies enact new strategies in the wake of COVID-19’s impact on the country and world, several are beginning to doubt whether upfront negotiations can be conducted in their usual late spring/summer timeframe.

Comcast Ends In-Home Installations

The nation’s largest cable operator has decided to end all in-home installations for new customers. Instead, the Comcast technician will perform the outside work required for a new installation, and then leave a package at your door with your equipment and detailed activation instructions on the scheduled installation day.

Free Spots Won’t Count Toward Lowest Unit Rate

The FCC has told broadcasters it doesn’t have to count free ads toward calculation of the lowest unit rate they are required to charge for political ads, but only if those are not “free spots” tied to an existing commercial contract.

Ford To Restart Some Plants In April

Ford said it will reopen some key truck factories by mid-April while Honda and Toyota, citing slumping sales, extended shutdowns at North American factories. Ford’s plans raised more concerns at the UAW, which has pressed the Detroit 3 to shutter plants to protect workers and help stem the spread of the coronavirus.