Also, Collin Jones becomes Radio Board chair and Pat LaPlatney is new TV Board chair.
Executives from Nexstar, Cox Media Group, Gray Television and ABC Owned Stations shared how their content businesses are evolving into 24/7 news networks, diginets, FAST channels, hyperlocal offerings and more at TVNewsCheck’s Programming Everywhere conference at NAB in Las Vegas last week. Pictured (l-r): Brad Wall, LTN Global; Adrianne Anderson, ABC Owned Stations; Steve Pruett, Cox Media Group; Sean Compton, Nexstar Media; and Pat LaPlatney, Gray Television. (Alyssa Wesley photo)
Top executives from Cox Media Group, Nexstar, Gray Television and ABC Owned Stations frame up how they’re building content everywhere lineups, then branding and promoting them locally and beyond in a panel at TVNewsCheck’s Programming Everywhere conference at the NAB Show in Las Vegas on April 16. Register here.
Back in the 1960s, WLBT in Jackson, Miss., had its license revoked after it actively promoted segregation, encouraged viewers to defy the government, break the law and mistreat their fellow human beings. Today, WLBT is an example of how to do race relations right, reflecting the needs, interests and employee makeup of a largely African American community. Its current owner, Gray Television, has just created the Gray Media Training Center to develop fully trained, highly qualified minority graduates for Gray’s stations in 113 markets.
Local broadcasters and cable operators needn’t be constantly at odds with each other, leaders from Fox Television Stations, Hearst Television and Gray Television said in a panel last week that also tackled streaming, M&A and diversity.
Station group leaders Jordan Wertlieb from Hearst Television; Jack Abernethy from Fox Television Stations; and Pat LaPlatney from Gray Television will unpack the state of TV amid enormous change at TV2025: Monetizing the Future, a virtual conference. Register here.
Gray Television said CEO Hilton H. Howell Jr.’s total compensation fell 27% to $8.89 million in 2020, the company reported. In a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Gray reported that Howell’s salary rose slightly to $1.23 million, but he received small stock awards and non-equity incentive plan compensation. President and co-CEO Pat LaPlatney’s compensation rose 8% to $4.13 million.
Pat LaPlatney, Co-CEO of Gray Television, says there’s “no question” it will be a hard quarter and year ahead for ad sales, but there are signs of hope in new and returning advertisers, along with new categories, later this spring.
Leaders from Nexstar, Gray and Meredith expressed hope that automation and impressions-based selling may help curb a downward trend in spot TV sales, but broadcasters must avoid being “held hostage” to tech companies in the process. L-r: Patrick McCreery of Meredith, Perry Sook of Nexstar and Pat LaPlatney of Gray. (Photo: Wendy Moger-Bross)
The FCC isn’t likely to loosen ownership restrictions anytime soon, said leaders from Nexstar, Gray and Meredith last week, but outside money is likely to continue coming into the industry while the ownership cap holds steady. L-r: Patrick McCreery of Meredith, Perry Sook of Nexstar and Pat LaPlatney of Gray. (Photo: Wendy Moger-Bross)
Executives from Nexstar, Gray, E.W. Scripps and Meredith will weigh in on key issues facing broadcast from regulation to retrans as well as reviewing the outlook on monetizing TV’s future.
The deal will add Community Newspaper Holdings’ 110 newspapers and other publications to Raycom’s portfolio, less seven it has to sell to comply with media ownership rules. Raycom and CNH are principally owned by Alabama state pension fund and based in Montgomery. “There are general administrative costs we can take out of the business,” while taking advantage of content sharing and sales opportunities, says Raycom CEO Pat LaPlatney.
C-level executives from Graham Media (Barr), Raycom (LaPlatney) and the Dallas Morning News (Moroney) will discuss the challenges of maintaining brand identity and monetizing inside Facebook’s walled garden during a TVNewsCheck webinar: “Optimize, Monetize Your Facebook Strategy.” Set for Tuesday, June 13, at 2 p.m. ET, the webinar, which will also feature Jason White, Facebook’s manager of U.S. news partnerships, will confront the challenges of migrating audiences from Facebook back to media’s owned and operated platforms.
The head of Sinclair Broadcast Group makes a powerful argument for ATSC 3.0. He believes it will spawn many enhancements and businesses that will more than justify the “immaterial” cost of implementation, especially the ability to deliver targeted advertising. There’s room for skepticism, but not enough to stop broadcasters from moving briskly ahead with the technology.
At last week’s TV2020 conference, TVNewsCheck Editor Harry Jessell sat down with station group heads Jack Abernethy of Fox, Pat LaPlatney of Raycom, David Smith of Sinclair and Perry Sook of Nexstar for a nuts-and-bolts discussion of the money-making potential of ATSC 3.0. Abernethy liked the technology, but was skeptical about the business models. However, the other three said adopting the new technology is a no-brainer. Said Sook: “It’s the next technological evolution of our business. I think it’s just a matter now of how fast we can roll things out.” Watch the session above.
But three other major stations group heads led by David Smith of Sinclair expressed unqualified enthusiasm for implementing the new broadcast standard, saying it will transform broadcasting into a fast-growing business again. “It’s essential for this industry to survive to have ATSC 3.0 in the marketplace as fast as possible,” said Smith.
One highlight of TVNewsCheck’s Nov. 9-10 TV2020 conference on the prospects for Next Gen TV will be the CEO panel featuring David Smith of Sinclair Broadcast Group, Perry Sook of Nexstar Broadcasting Group and Pat LaPlatney of Raycom Media.
Raycom Media’s new CEO, Pat LaPlatney, has a broad TV background, but it’s his experience in what digital media can offer that led to his succeeding Paul McTear as the station group’s top exec. He says he sees broadcasting, the web, mobile, OTT and other digital media as parts of a whole. Raycom, he says, needs “to aggregate the biggest video audience we can, gather as much data as we can about that audience and go out and sell it aggressively.”
Paul McTear, Raycom Media president-CEO, will retire at the end of June after being with the company from its inception in 1997 and serving as CEO since 2001. He will be succeeded by current SVP Pat LaPlatney who joined Raycom in 2007 and who now oversees all revenue for the company along with the company’s growing digital ventures. In addition, SVP Susana Schuler is being promoted to EVP of content and operations.
The president of Bonneville International takes the seat formerly held by Ray Cole, president of Citadel Communications.
The broadcaster, with its new Raycom Innovation Group, is using digital solutions to confront new challenges to its core business. Joe Fiveash, new corporate VP of digital, strategy and business development, and Pat LaPlatney, group VP, explain the Raycom’s moves in the digital space, including bolstering its digital sales force, making changes to its mobile platform and paying more attention to user data.