COMCAST AND CBS ANNOUNCE DEAL TO OFFER HIT SHOWS THROUGH VIDEO ON DEMAND
CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, NCIS, Survivor and The Amazing Race First Broadcasts Offered Through Groundbreaking Agreement
Philadelphia and New York � November 7, 2005 � Comcast (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) and CBS (NYSE: VIA, VIA.B) today announced that they will make four of the broadcaster�s leading prime-time entertainment series available for viewers to watch at their convenience. This announcement marks a new phase for video on demand and further emphasizes the changing landscape of providing prime-time content to viewers whenever they choose. CBS, in partnership with Comcast, is the first broadcast network to offer its most coveted primetime programming through VOD with a cable provider.
Beginning in January, Comcast Digital Cable customers in markets served by CBS owned-and-operated television stations (including the top 7 US markets) will be able to view episodes of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, NCIS, Survivor and The Amazing Race on Comcast�s ON DEMAND service. The on-demand programs will be available as early as midnight following their broadcast on the CBS television network. Each episode will cost 99 cents, and customers will be able to view the episodes anytime they want for up to 24 hours from the time they order them. Certain Comcast systems also may make CSI and NCIS available ON DEMAND in high-definition for customers with HD-enabled Comcast digital cable set-top boxes. Prior to the March debut of new episodes of Survivor and The Amazing Race, viewers will be able to order episodes of the fall 2005 editions (Survivor: Guatemala and The Amazing Race 8.)
�Video on demand has fundamentally changed the way people watch TV, and now for the first time the most popular prime-time CBS programming will be available to our customers,� said Brian Roberts, Chairman and CEO of Comcast Corporation. �CBS has taken a giant step forward in experimenting with prime-time video on demand. Comcast�s ON DEMAND service has been tremendously successful, with more than one billion program views so far this year.�
�This is an incredibly exciting evolution for CBS and network television -- video on demand is the next frontier for our industry, and we are thrilled to be partnering with Comcast in taking this giant, positive leap forward,� said Leslie Moonves, Chairman, CBS and Co-President and Co-Chief Operating Officer, Viacom. �We�re offering hit programming that is extremely well-suited for this new medium, and we�re confident the lure of watching these shows at one�s own convenience, will make this feature wildly popular. From its days as one of the first radio broadcasters to its leadership in HDTV, CBS has always been on the cutting edge of broadcasting technology, and this latest development further distinguishes us as the undisputed industry leader.�
The deal combines Comcast, the country�s leading provider of cable, entertainment and communications products and services, with the new CBS Corporation, a leading global media company, with preeminent positions in broadcast and cable television, radio, outdoor advertising, and online. Viacom Inc. is in the process of separating its business into two publicly traded companies, one of which will include the CBS Corporation.
Comcast�s ON DEMAND service offers a growing library of more than 3,800 programs available any time customers want to watch them � with the ability to fast forward, rewind and pause selections. Nearly 95% of ON DEMAND programs are available at no additional charge.
Upon the split of Viacom Inc., the CBS Corporation will be a mass media company with constituent parts that reach back to the beginnings of the broadcast industry, as well as newer businesses that operate on the leading edge of the media industry. It will have operations in virtually every field of media and entertainment, including broadcast television (CBS and UPN), cable television (Showtime), local television (Viacom Television Stations Group), television production and syndication (Paramount Television and King World), radio (Infinity Broadcasting), advertising on out-of-home media (Viacom Outdoor), publishing (Simon & Schuster) and theme parks (Paramount Parks).
Comcast Corporation (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) (www.comcast.com) is the nation's leading provider of cable, entertainment and communications products and services. With 21.4 million cable customers, 8.1 million high-speed Internet customers, and 1.2 million voice customers, Comcast is principally involved in the development, management and operation of broadband cable networks and in the delivery of programming content.
The Company's content networks and investments include E! Entertainment Television, Style Network, The Golf Channel, OLN, G4, AZN Television, PBS KIDS Sprout, TV One and four regional Comcast SportsNets. The Company also has a majority ownership in Comcast-Spectacor, whose major holdings include the Philadelphia Flyers NHL hockey team, the Philadelphia 76ers NBA basketball team and two large multipurpose arenas in Philadelphia. Comcast Class A common stock and Class A Special common stock trade on The NASDAQ Stock Market under the symbols CMCSA and CMCSK, respectively.