Cable nets lead revenue generators for media companies

Video and broadband providers kept leading media companies in the black and growing ever-so-slowly in 2009 despite a lousy economy, according to an in-depth look at the 100 leading media companies in Advertising Age.

According to the magazine's market analysis, video and broadband services were the top source of media revenue for eight of the nation's 15 biggest firms, including Comcast (Nasdaq: CMCSA) and DirecTV (Nasdaq: DTV) where they accounted for 39 percent of all revenue. Cable networks provided the largest chunk of media revenue for five of the top 15 including Walt Disney Co. (NYSE: DIS), Viacom (NYSE: VIA) and Time Warner (NYSE: TWC-WI).

"Video and broadband providers are the elephants in the media room" because they "benefit from fee revenue that is less susceptible to the cyclical swings of ad revenue," the story stated.

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