Wednesday, February 11, 2009


WSJ today has a nice article on local TV station biz. And another one on the difficulties facing Clear Channel. This is the reason why I think CBS will run into trouble later this year. What this article doesn't mention is that networks like CBS, NBC, Fox and ABC make zero money - all the money is made by the tv stations. Disney also owns some tv stations, but its exposure to the troubled segments of the ad biz is lower than the rest of media companies. 

Reliance ADAG is still in JV with DreamWorks - the initial media reports suggested that this JV might also suffer. With Disney taking 10% distribution fee (instead of 8% with Universal) and DVD sales plummeting, it is hard to see how Ambani makes money on this. 

Washington Post is quite interesting - its newspaper business is declining, but the decline is lesser than peers. It also owns a cable business, and its education business (Barrons etc) is also quite strong. Need to look at it more closely.

Also need to look at Microsoft. Anecdotally, Windows 7 is a real improvement on anything Windows has offered so far. The replacement cycle for Vista never really happened. Microsoft stock used to run up in anticipation of new releases, but who knows what happens this year. 10% PC market decline, and mix shift to low priced notebooks is clearly -ve. 

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