SBD/9/Sports Media

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  • CBS PROFITS DECLINE IN FOURTH QUARTER

         Higher program costs and reduced sales at CBS resulted in a
    drop of 4% in 4thQ profits to $44.5M.  For the full year, net
    income dropped 14% to $281.6M.  Sales and income for the year
    were strong, boosted by a strong performance by "Late Show with
    David Letterman" and coverage of the '94 Winter Games.  CBS
    struggled in the 4thQ because it had no pro football or baseball
    broadcasts.  CBS shares closed 12.5 cents lower to $62.875
    (REUTERS/N.Y. TIMES, 2/9).
         DILLER:  "Widely regarded as one of the hottest pieces of
    manpower in the entertainment business," Barry Diller is "back in
    play," according to this morning's WALL STREET JOURNAL.  Diller
    is resigning shortly as CEO of QVC and is "being cagy about his
    plans."  In Hollywood and on Wall Street, "guessing Mr. Diller's
    next move has become a spectator sport," and many expect him to
    make "another run" at CBS (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 2/9).
    

    Print | Tags: CBS, Media, Viacom
  • CFL AND CBC RATIFY TV DEAL

         The CFL and CBC-TV announced a new 3-year TV agreement.  The
    upcoming season marks the 43rd consecutive year that CBC will
    broadcast CFL games.  CFL Commissioner Larry Smith:  "We are
    extremely pleased to endure our long-standing relationship with
    the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.  The quality of CBC's
    television coverage over the past 42 years has been excellent"
    (CFL).  CFL VP/Communications Mike Murray says the league will
    receive more than C$5M in revenue for the next three years with
    the new TV deal.  Murray: "The league and all our clubs are happy
    with our deal with the CBC and we are now exploring the
    possibility of pay-per-view and cable television."  Murray said
    the league will now begin negotiations with ESPN2 and TSN (Norman
    Da Costa, TORONTO STAR, 2/9).
    

    Print | Tags: Canadian Broadcasting Corp., CFL, ESPN, Media, Walt Disney
  • ESPN/ESPN2 TO TELEVISE ATP TOUR EVENTS

         ESPN has struck a deal with the ATP tour that will allow
    ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPN International to broadcast the ATP Tour
    Championship Series and the official year-end championship.  ESPN
    will provide week-long coverage of the tournaments in the U.S.
    and Canada.  ESPN2 will televise Thursday-Sunday events in
    Europe.  In addition, ESPN and the ATP Tour will jointly produce
    a 30-minute highlight program: "ATP Tour Magazine" (ESPN).
    

    Print | Tags: ATP, ESPN, Media, Walt Disney
  • HBO'S ABRAHAM DISCUSSES NEW SPORTS PROGRAM

         Time Warner Sports President Seth Abraham says HBO's "Real
    Sports with Bryant Gumbel" will be "unlike any ever attempted ...
    covering stories no one else will pursue or even touch,"
    according to Mike Hiestand of USA TODAY.  The show will also
    include Jim Lampley, Larry Merchant, James Brown, Frank Deford
    and Ira Berkow.  Unlike the networks, HBO "doesn't have to worry
    about offending any league to which it pays multimillion rights
    fees or worry about advertisers."  Gumbel admits to the networks'
    difficulty in sports journalism: "With CBS, you might say 'Report
    on how much the basketball Final Four generates and how little
    goes to the kids.' But would it be worth it for them to risk
    their relations with the NCAA?"  The show will debut April 2 and
    air four times in '95 (Mike Heistand, USA TODAY, 2/9).
    

    Print | Tags: CBS, HBO, NCAA, Media, Time Warner, Viacom
  • LEGISLATION ON CAPITOL HILL PUTS A VIACOM DEAL IN JEOPARDY

         The House Ways and Means Committee approved a bill that
    would "repeal a tax break for minority owned media companies."
    The act could jeopardize Viacom Inc.'s plans to sell its cable TV
    systems for $2.3B "while avoiding hundreds of millions of dollars
    in taxes."  Viacom wants to sell its systems to a Sacramento-
    based company Mitgo, owned by black entrepreneur Frank
    Washington.  Viacom officials said the deal "could not be
    preserved unless the tax deal was preserved."  Viacom is "anxious
    to exit" the cable business because the sale would help reduce
    debt acquired when it bought Paramount last year (Edmund Andrews,
    N.Y. TIMES, 2/9).  A cancellation of the deal would "delay
    indefinitely a sweeping agreement now pending" between Viacom and
    TCI (Calmes & Robichaux, WALL STREET JOURNAL, 2/9).
    

    Print | Tags: Media, Viacom
  • MEDIA NOTES

         MasterCard will announce today that it will spend about
    $100M on a '98 World Cup sponsorship, which includes about $35M
    on TV ads globally, a 25% increase from its spending on '95 World
    Cup spending (Mike Heistand, USA TODAY, 2/9).... Press Box will
    profile the Stielger family tonight at 9pm.  They are one of
    America's most promising figure skating families, with three
    members taking part in the U.S. Figure Skating Championships this
    week in Providence, R.I. (Press Box)....Dave Barnett, the one-
    time radio voice of the Mavericks, is the top candidate to
    replace Brad Sham as the Cowboys play-by-play announcer (DALLAS
    MORNING NEWS, 2/9).
    

    Print | Tags: Dallas Cowboys, Dallas Mavericks, MasterCard, Southwest Sports Group, Media
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