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NBC is attempting to "rekindle talks" with Turner Broadcasting about aligning the two companies, even after talks of a merger came to an "abrupt halt" recently over who would control the operation. NBC wants the talks to focus on how the cable and broadcast news organizations could "more closely" work together. NBC President Robert Wright: "The long-term merits of this combination -- both in savings and generating new revenues - - would be very significant, and that's why we really worked hard to put this proposal together" (Diane Mermigas, ELECTRONIC MEDIA, 1/23).
ESPN President & CEO Steve Bornstein was selected as one of the "12 to Watch" by ELECTRONIC MEDIA. Bornstein on hopes for '95: "We anticipate The Deuce to do significant homes growth. I think we'll be able to crystallize how soon we'll be launching what we've been discussing recently, the ESPN sports tier with multiple types of networks that appeal to a more narrow and niche-oriented audience. And finally I would think 1995 is going to be a real red-letter year in the international distribution aspect of our business." Bornstein explained that the sports tier of networks would consist of an all sports news channel, an auto racing channel, water sports channels, and all-football channel, "you name it." On the move toward niche channels: "I would go back to Viacom and MTV announcing they're going to be doing basically to television what has happened in radio. I think that model can make some sense. We're not convinced that it will make sense. But as the industry evolves under re- regulation, I think we'll find out pretty quick whether there is demand for this kind of unregulated product" (ELECTRONIC MEDIA, 1/23).