Black-Owned Media Outlets See Chance To Capture Ad Dollars Long Denied

In the space of just a few weeks, a group of Madison Avenue heavyweights — with names like General Motors, Interpublic Group and WPP — has made public guarantees of ad money for some of the industry’s smaller media outlets, all owned by Black entrepreneurs. Getting these companies to talk about ad spending in public is an amazing feat. For Byron Allen, it’s just a first step.

Black-Owned Media Upfront To Showcase Programming, Promote Economic Inclusion In Advertising Industry

Byron Allen, founder, chairman and CEO of Allen Media Group and The Weather Group, will continue his crusade to win equity and inclusion for Black-owned media in the world of advertising by headlining  the first Black-Owned Media Upfront. The event, set for May 11 and 12 from noon to 2:30 p.m. ET, will turn a spotlight on the programming and audiences of his companies and others involved in the movement. Register here to participate.

Byron Allen Elected To NAB Television Board

The National Association of Broadcasters on Wednesday announced the results of the 2021 NAB Radio and Television Board elections. The two-year terms of the elected board members will begin in June 2021. New board members or those who have previously served on the board are listed in italics; other board members listed below are currently […]

TVN WORKING LUNCH WEBINAR

April Ryan To Join Black-Owned Media Matters Webinar

The veteran television journalist will interview Byron Allen, owner of The Weather Channel, Entertainment Studios and Allen Media Group, about his progress at convincing major marketers to devote 2% of their annual advertising spend on Black-owned media. Allen’s efforts have convinced General Motors to commit to a long-term advertising investment and Verizon announced it is planning to partner with Allen in a summit in May. To join the webinar, register here.

TVN WORKING LUNCH WEBINAR

Black-Owned Media Leaders To Gather for TVN Webinar

Systemic racism in the advertising industry has left Black-owned media with a fraction of the advertising dollars that should be flowing their way, argues Byron Allen, owner of The Weather Channel and founder of Entertainment Studios and Allen Media Group. Allen, who maintains big marketers can ameliorate the problem by devoting 2% of their advertising spend on Black-owned media, will press his case during a TVNewsCheck webinar, Black Owned Media Matters, set to take place Thursday, April 15, at 1 p.m. ET. Register here.

Byron Allen Challenges Madison Avenue To Spend With Black-Owned Media, Or Else

Tired of pledges from advertisers to diversify their ad spend without actually following through, the owner of a production company, television stations and eight cable networks, including the Weather Channel, is insisting agencies and brands shift 2% of their ad spend to Black-owned media — and he’s backing up that demand with legal action.

Charter, Byron Allen Resolve $10 Billion Discrimination Lawsuit

Byron Allen’s Entertainment Studios Networks said it has “resolved and withdrawn” its lawsuit against Charter Communications. The one-sentence joint statement from Entertainment Studios and Charter did not elaborate on whether Allen’s TV channels would now be carried by Charter or if any money changed hands.

Talking TV | M&A In ’21 And Byron Allen’s $10B Target

TVNewsCheck Editor Michael Depp and writer Paige Albiniak discuss the outlook for station group M&A activity this year and Byron Allen’s aspiration to spend $10 billion acquiring Big Four affiliates, possibly including an O&O group. Read more about Allen’s plans and the industry’s M&A prospects in our story here.

TVN’S TV2025

TV Group CEOs Bullish On Core Recovery, M&A Pickup In ’21

The chief executives of E.W. Scripps, Sinclair, Graham Media and Allen Media see brighter days coming in 2021 with the prospect of the Supreme Court quashing outdated ownership rules and M&A activity heating up, along with core advertising bouncing back from the pandemic. Read the story and/or watch the full video  above.

TV CEOs On Industry’s Dramatic Year At TV2025

Leaders from Sinclair, E.W. Scripps, Graham Media and Entertainment Studios will share their outlook on a momentous year and its implications for revenue prospects, M&A, NextGen TV and an evolving relationship with the networks at TVNewsCheck’s virtual conference TV2025: Monetizing the Future on Oct. 21. Register here.

Court Rules Byron Allen Suit Vs. Charter Can Proceed

Byron Allen’s Media Domination Plans

The comic turned mogul has played the long game since he was a kid, acquiring assets like The Weather Channel and taking a racial equality dispute with Comcast all the way to the Supreme Court: “I’d love to own CNN. … And I will.”

 

Byron Allen, Comcast Settle Discrimination Suit

Byron Allen has withdrawn his $20 billion racial discrimination lawsuit against Comcast. The two parties have entered into a carriage agreement, with the cable company carrying Allen’s 15 TV channels, including The Weather Channel. The deal also includes the distribution of Comedy.TV, Recipe.TV and JusticeCentral.TV on X1, video on demand and TV everywhere.

COMMENTARY

Black America Speaks. America Should Listen.

Byron Allen: Ten proposals on what the United States needs to do to never come back here again.

SCOTUS Tosses Appeals Decision In Allen Case

The justices agreed unanimously that an appeals court applied the wrong legal standard in allowing business owner Byron Allen’s $20 billion suit against Comcast to go forward. Allen has a separate $10 billion suit against Charter Communications that the justices’ decision also affects.

Tegna Suitors Will Have To Spin Off Stations

The race to acquire TV station owner Tegna Inc. hinges not just on the price suitors are willing to pay, but also on how much they may give up in terms of assets to win regulatory approval, people familiar with the matter said. All three bidders own TV stations that regulators would require to be divested because of the potential overlap, the sources added.

Byron Allen Makes $8.5B Cash Bid For Tegna

Media entrepreneur Byron Allen has made an all-cash bid for Tegna and is said to be one of three potential buyers circling the Tysons, Va.-based broadcaster, according to a source familiar with the situation. Allen’s Allen Media Group offered $20 a share, or about $8.5 billion, the source said. It is going up against Gray Television, which last week made a offer, also for $20 a share but in a combination of cash and stock. Private equity firm Apollo Global Management, which recently acquired stations from Cox, is also said to have made a bid.

Big Shareholder Urges Comcast To Settle

A major shareholder — New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer — is pressuring Comcast to back down from its thorny legal battle with comedian-turned-TV producer Byron Allen — something the media mogul says he would welcome.

Byron Allen Spares No One In Bias Suit

The black entrepreneur has gone after civil rights groups and other black leaders to make his case against Comcast. Some fear that protections dating to 1866 are in jeopardy.

Justices Hears Byron Allen v. Comcast Arguments

After hearing arguments Wednesday, Supreme Court justices seemed to agree that an appeals court applied the wrong legal standard in allowing Entertainment Studios owner Byron Allen’s $20 billion race bias suit against Comcast to go forward.

Byron Allen, Comcast To Square Off Today

Byron Allen’s racial discrimination case against Comcast Corp. heads to the Supreme Court today, where justices will consider Comcast’s argument that the case should hinge on two words: “but for.” Allen filed a $20 billion lawsuit against Comcast in February 2015, arguing that the nation’s largest cable operator was discriminating against his company, Entertainment Studios, by refusing to carry its seven lifestyle cable channels. Comcast maintained the decision was made strictly on business grounds because of the lack of audience demand for Allen’s channels.

Comcast Threatened With Being ‘Broken Up’

Less than a week before Comcast and Department of Justice lawyers will face off against Byron Allen in the Supreme Court in the Entertainment Studios boss’ $20 billion discrimination lawsuit against the NBCUniverisal owner, Rep. Bobby Rush now wants the telecommunications giant brought down to size.

Byron Allen On Partnership With Sinclair

Allen is chief executive of television conglomerate Entertainment Studios, which recently partnered with Sinclair Broadcast Group, the TV station group owner that has drawn criticism for a perceived conservative bias. Asked whether Sinclair’s political bent concerns him, Allen says, “I don’t let that get in the way. There’s business and there’s politics. And we can put politics aside.”

Allen v. Comcast Could Reshape Bias Suits

While TV mogul Byron Allen alleges racism in refusing to license his niche channels, U.S. businesses worry that a win for him during the new Supreme Court term would increase legal costs and hurt their reputations.

Comcast & Byron Allen’s $20B SCOTUS Battle Heats Up

Days before the new session of the Supreme Court is set to begin, an ever-growing chorus of displeasure with the alliance between Comcast and Donald Trump’s Department of Justice in Byron Allen’s $20 billion battle with the NBCUniversal owner grew even louder and potentially more presidential.

Byron Allen Buying 11 Stations For $290M

Allen Media Broadcasting is purchasing USA Television’s portfolio of 11 network affiliates in nine markets. Bob Prather has agreed to stay on to manage the group.

Justices Tuning In To Cable Civil Rights Suit

Supreme Court justices will hear arguments Nov. 13 in a $20 billion lawsuit that Comedian and media mogul Byron Allen filed against Comcast, with the outcome also affecting a $10 billion racial discrimination case he has filed against Comcast.

Civil Rights Group Threatens Comcast Boycott

Comcast may have a U.S. Supreme Court battle and a boycott backlash brewing in their $20 billion racial discrimination fight with Byron Allen. “We are appalled by your decision to challenge and destroy the federal civil rights statute of 1866 in the U.S. Supreme Court and do so in partnership with the Trump Administration’s Department of Justice,” The Los Angeles Urban League told Comcast boss Brian Roberts and Senior EVP David Cohen on Wednesday in a scorching letter to the media executives.

Sinclair Closes $10.6B Disney RSN Purchase

Byron Allen is an equity and content partner in the RSN holding company that includes exclusive local rights to 42 professional teams consisting of 14 Major League Baseball teams, 16 National Basketball Association teams, and 12 National Hockey League  teams.

Byron Allen Rips Comcast, Justice Dept.

Heading towards a $20 billion showdown with Comcast at the U.S. Supreme Court this fall in his long running racial discrimination lawsuit against the media giant, Byron Allen today tore into the Brian Roberts-run company and an 11th hour intervention by the Department of Justice. “This is historic,” the Entertainment Studios boss said of an Aug. 15 brief filed by the feds seeking to tighten the definitions of a Reconstruction Era statute in Comcast’s favor. “Donald Trump’s DOJ and Comcast are working together to destroy a civil rights statute in the U.S. Supreme Court.”

EXECUTIVE SESSION

Executive Session | The Ever-Expanding Horizons Of Byron Allen

The broadcast syndication and cable programming veteran has stepped up his game with purchases of The Weather Channel and some network affiliates while joining Sinclair Broadcast Group in buying Disney’s regional sports networks. And he’s looking for even more opportunities, hinting that his next big growth spurt may come after an IPO.

Supreme Court To Hear Cable TV Bias Dispute

On Monday, the justices of the high court announced that they had accepted for review a case claiming discrimination in contracting against Comcast in alleged violation of section 1981 of the Civil Rights Act. The $20 billion lawsuit comes from Byron Allen’s Entertainment Studios Network, an African American owned programmer upset over the way that cable TV distributors refused to make good offers to license his channels.

DMAS 103 & 121

Byron Allen Buying Bayou City TVs For $165M

The Entertainment Studios CEO’s Allen Media is getting CBS, NBC and Fox affiliates in Evansville, Ind., and Lafayette, La.

Byron Allen Jumps Into Race For Disney RSNs

Disney’s sale of 21 regional sports networks is heating up yet again — thanks to comedian-turned-media mogul Byron Allen jumping into the already crowded and contentious race. Allen, 58, is joining forces with Sinclair Broadcast Group to bid on the RSNs.

Byron Allen Still ‘Very Acquisitive’ After Transformative Year

Appeals Court: Byron Allen Cases Can Proceed

A federal appeals court cleared the way for Byron Allen’s Entertainment Studios Networks to pursue civil rights suits against two of the nation’s biggest cable operators, Charter Communications and Comcast. These lawsuits seek sizable damages  — $20 billion against Comcast and $10 billion against Charter — for alleged violations of the Civil Rights Act.

Byron Allen, Betty White Among Tartikoff Honorees

Byron Allen, Mara Brock Akil, Robert Greenblatt, Rita Moreno, Betty White and Henry Winkler will be feted at an awards gala set to take place during NATPE Miami 2019 on Jan. 23.

Byron Allen Interested In Buying Tribune Media

Byron Allen, the comedian turned media mogul, is in the hunt to buy Tribune Media, the 42-station TV group, which went on the block for a second time earlier this year. Allen, who paid $300 million for the Weather Channel in April, owns Los Angeles-based Entertainment Studios, an independent movie production company, and has been on the prowl to expand his media footprint.

Entertainment Studios Secures $500M In Credit

Owner Byron Allen says this will allow it to “make large-scale acquisitions, which is a major part of our strategy going forward.”

Weather Channel Expands Live Coverage After Sale