Immelt: NBC Still Underperforming, Facing Cuts

As part of his annual outlook, GE CEO Jeffrey Immelt gave a stark outlook for the immediate future at NBC. Key points, via MediaPost:

  • The writer’s strike is already impacting the bottom line at NBC, which will look to cut costs by lowering investment in primetime programming (hello, “American Gladiators.”) “We’ve got to continue to look for ways to take costs out of the system,” Immelt said. (Thus the layoffs at NBC News earlier this month)
  • The entire NBC U unit, including fast-growing cable networks, will come in at the low end of the 10% to 15% profit growth projections in Q4. 2007 Profit breakdown: NBC (network and stations), $700 million, Universal film and parks, $900 million, and NBC U cable unit, $1.7 billion.
  • Further consolidation between NBC and TV production arm Universal Media Studios possible.
  • Network will focus on “key hours” and “selectively utilise low-cost content in prime.” Translation: low-cost reality and game shows.

Related: NBC: Yes, Ratings So Bad We’re Giving Money Back
NBC News Drops 20; Are More Cuts Coming?
Writer’s Strike Bloodies CBS, NBC: Leno, Letterman Down

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