Those recent rowdy retransmission consent battles between LIN TV and pay MVPDs have apparently paid off for the broadcaster. LIN reported that its first quarter net revenue ($92.6 million) increased 1 percent over the same period last year and an big chunk of that could be traced to digital revenues that increased by 31 percent to $17.2. Digital revenues combine Internet advertising and retransmission consent fees.
LIN, in addition to extracting more retrans fees, has also been a leader in the mobile digital TV initiative which broadcasters are using to resist relinquishing more spectrum to the FCC's national broadband plan. In LIN's case, the broadcaster said it had 89 million "mobile impressions," including mobile Web sites and smartphone and table applications, compared to 42 million a year ago.
In an earnings news release LIN President-CEO Vincent Sadusky said that digital revenues a "now 19 percent of total net revenues, the highest contribution since the launch of our digital strategy in 2007" and "helped offset the decrease in (non-election year) political revenues and contributed to our overall growth."
- see this news release
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