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Online Video to Benefit from $9B Time Warner Cable Split

30 Mar, 2009 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Time Warner Inc. intends to spend some of the $9.25 billion dividend from the April 3 split from Time Warner Cable on a variety of online video projects, including the previously announced “TV Everywhere” initiative, according to a March 30 company-wide memo from CEO Jeff Bewkes.

The executive said “TV Everywhere,” which offers hit cable series such as HBO’s “The Wire,” “Entourage” and “True Blood,” and TNT’s “The Closer” and “Saving Grace,” among others, online as value-adds is currently being tested via Time Warner Cable in Milwaukee.

The ad-supported content is disseminated similarly to repurposed network programming on Hulu.com, TV.com, MySpace, Yahoo TV and YouTube, among others.

Bewkes said he intends to produce a trial run of “TV Everywhere” later this year.

Separately, Time Warner acquired a 31% stake in Central European Media Enterprises Ltd. (CME) for $241.5 million. CME operates about 22 broadcast networks, pay-TV channels and related Internet properties in the Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Croatia, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia and the Ukraine.

"We're using this money to invest in our businesses, as well as to strengthen our balance sheet and return value directly to our stockholders,” Bewkes told employees.

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