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Cablevision Inks Streaming Deal With CBS

25 Aug, 2015 By: Erik Gruenwedel

A key component to wider consumer acceptance of over-the-top video services such as HBO Now, Showtime and CBS All Access is easy access.

Cablevision Aug. 25 announced a deal with CBS whereby the Manhattan, N.Y.-based cable operator becomes the media company’s first pay-TV operator to deliver its OTT video services to broadband subscribers. Pricing plans, timing and other particulars will be provided at a later time.

Cablevision, which lost 134,000 video subscribers in its most-recent fiscal period, has aggressively sought to soften the exodus through direct-access deals with OTT video services such as Hulu Plus and Netflix.

Speaking in June at the Guggenheim 2015 TMT Symposium in N.Y., CEO James Dolan said monthly data and connectivity usage at Cablevision has accelerated 123% over the past two years, including 121% on a monthly basis, with Wi-Fi usage up 60%. He said the transition toward OTT video is due in part to the shrinking margin around pay-TV. He said data and connectivity is outperforming video 7-1 in terms of profit to Cablevision.

“There’s a real opportunity there for cable [selling connectivity],” Dolan said.

Indeed, the CBS agreement enables Cablevision to expand its portfolio of next-generation offerings, connecting subscribers to programming on demand.

“This new agreement … meets all of our economic and strategic goals,” Ray Hopkins, president of television networks distribution for CBS Corp., said in a statement.

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