NBC U is airing Olympic boxing, tennis, and softball after the markets close (5pm ET, 2pm on the West Coast). Probably a smart move given CNBC has a tough enough time getting people to watch Jim Cramer after the financial markets close, and summer doesn’t help.
Now FBN is buying commercial time on CNBC in New York, Chicago, LA, and other markets with former CNBC anchor Liz Claman urging viewers looking for business news to switch channels when the Olympics come on. It’s a desperate gambit: FBN needs to prove it can compete in the few markets it has cable carriage to convince other cable networks to add the channel. So far it has distribution in 41.6 million households, compared to CNBC’s 92.5 million.
Some solace for News Corp. CEO Rupert Murdoch: His money-losing FBN isn’t actually paying CNBC to get on their air. The local ads were purchased on cable systems carrying the network — Time Warner Cable (TWC), Comcast (CMCSA), Charter (CHTR) and RCN (RCNI).
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