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Did you ever wonder why fierce battles take place within the broadcast crowd? Does the margin in your business stack up with that of broadcasting?

Yes, the Internet is siphoning away chunks of the free TV audience according to the generally reliable Paul Kagan organization. "Advertising sales in the broadcast network upfront ad sales market fell 0.4% in Spring, the second consecutive annual decline. Despite those woes and more, top broadcast TV stations still achieve breath-taking profit margins."

The Kagan Research newsletter Broadcast Investor: Deals and Finance calculates that TV stations owned by the big four broadcast TV networks generated cash flow profit margins of 46%, as the accompanying table indicates. For the whole broadcast TV station industry, the rate stands at 41%-well above most other media sectors. Cash flow margin measures core profitability from operations expressed as a percentage of net sales. Not bad for a dying business.

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_Dale Cripps

Posted by Dale Cripps, September 7, 2006 4:51 PM

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About Dale Cripps

Dale Cripps is a professional journalist who has focused two thirds of his career on the subject of high-definition television. Upon completing his education in business and service in the military he formed Cripps and Associates, South Pasadena, California, in 1964, which operated as a market-development company for aerospace services. In 1983 he turned to television and began what has become a 20 year campaign to pioneer HDTV. For fifteen of those years he published the well-regarded HDTV Newsletter (an international monthly written for television professionals). During much of this same time he also served as the HDTV-Technical Editor for "Widescreen Review Magazine." On November 16, 1998 he launched the Internet distributed HDTV Magazine, which remains the only consumer publication devoted exclusively to high-definition television. In April of 2002 he co-founded with Tedson Meyers of Coudert Bros, the High-definition Television Association of America, which is presently based in Washington DC. Cripps is the president of this organization. Mr. Cripps is a charter member of the Academy of Digital Television Pioneers and honored by that organization with the DTV Press Leadership Award of 2002. He makes his home in Oregon.