This week’s NewFronts saw TV companies getting more serious about selling their digital inventory and setting the stage for a battle between advertisers’ TV and digital video budgets. The event also saw publishers like Conde Nast and Vice Media talking up their own TV studios.
Condé Nast’s 6-year-old entertainment video division, Conde Nast Entertainment, has 35 feature film and 30 TV projects in development and production. CNE overall is on track to be profitable this year, says its president, Dawn Ostroff. Its digital division, where CNE functions as both a producer and distributor of video, has been profitable since last year. Digital still accounts for a majority of CNE’s revenues, but that’s expected to change in the next five years as the feature film and TV business picks up, Ostroff says.
Newhouse, the long-time publisher of Conde Nast, owned The New Yorker, Vogue, Vanity Fair and other magazines associated with the golden age of publishing.
Negotiations for a sale have apparently been going on for several months between the companies. Condé Nast CEO Bob Sauerberg and artistic director Anna Wintour brought in UBS Investment Bank to oversee the purchase from Eldbridge Industries, represented by Moelis & Co. and Goldman Sachs. There’s a possibility negotiations have stalled over the asking price.
Are print’s biggest names ready to compete with TV networks for lucrative online video ad revenue? Conde Nast and the Wall Street Journal are taking different — but equally interesting — approaches.
Publisher Conde Nast is creating video networks based on its Glamour and GQ magazines. The move is part of a broader expansion the company is making into television and digital under Dawn Ostroff, a former high-ranking television executive who has overseen programming at Lifetime and the CW.