NBC cable's net worth more than broadcast for Comcast

While the NBC broadcast network is getting the lion's share of attention Comcast (Nasdaq: CMCSA) inexorably pushes forward its $30 billion acquisition of NBC Universal, the real money and value lies in the cable networks that Comcast will buy from the entertainment and media giant.

When Steve Burke finally steps down as Comcast COO (if he doesn't continue to hold dual titles) and steps up as NBC Universal CEO, he'll be confronted with a USA Network that's worth $11.7 billion and an NBC Network worth a negative $600 million, according to a story in The Hollywood Reporter.

The story used information from Wunderlich Securities analyst Matthew Harrigan that appraised NBCU's total value at $32.5 billion (making it a relative bargain for Comcast's $30 billion or so bid). Seventy-eight percent of that worth comes from the media giant's cable networks while NBC broadcast drags everything down. By comparison, Harrigan values Walt Disney Co.'s (NYSE: DIS) ABC network at $1.2 billion. Ironically, at Burke's urging, Comcast made its first foray into the broadcast acquisition business by trying-and failing-to acquire Disney.

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