Light Reading
Also: Cable recovering from Sandy's wrath; Brightcove at a loss in Q3; The Cable Center boards up

Icahn: Netflix Sale Has 'Crossed Our Minds'

Jeff Baumgartner
LR Cable News Analysis
Jeff Baumgartner
11/1/2012
50%
50%

Welcome to today's broadband and cable news roundup.

  • A sale of Netflix Inc. (Nasdaq: NFLX) is among the strategies that have "crossed our minds," billionaire activist investor Carl Icahn told Bloomberg TV soon after word spread that he had taken a 10 percent stake in the video streaming and DVD rental giant. He said the over-the-top video market is getting crowded and he expects to see some consolidation, identifying Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT), Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) and Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) among potential suitors. "We don't have any definite plans or proposals, but I think it's almost obvious that there should be consolidation," Icahn said. (See Icahn Nabs 10% of Netflix .)

    He also thinks "nobody has a better platform than Netflix" to take advantage of a trend that is seeing consumers view more and more video via Internet-connected TVs, tablets and smartphones. Icahn believes Netflix should place less emphasis on older library content and spend a lot more developing original programming to help it compete with premium subscription services such as HBO. For more, check out the interview below:



  • Cable outages in areas affected by Hurricane Sandy had fallen "well under" 20 percent as of Wednesday morning, Broadcasting & Cable reported, citing David Turetsky, chief of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) 's Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau. The day before, the FCC said the average was about 25 percent. (See Service Providers Assess Sandy's Impact .)

  • Cablevision Systems Corp. (NYSE: CVC) said recovery efforts underway following the storm has caused it to reschedule its third-quarter earnings call to Tuesday, Nov. 6 at 11 a.m.

  • Online video publisher Brightcove Inc. posted a third-quarter net loss of $600,000 (2 cents per share) on revenues of $22.1 million, up 32 percent from the year-ago quarter. Brightcove ended the quarter with cash and cash equivalents of $30.8 million, down from $58.6 million in the previous quarter due primarily to its $27.2 million acquisition of Zencoder, a cloud-based video encoding service. (See Brightcove Raises $55M in Nasdaq Debut .)

  • The Denver-based The Cable Center has expanded its board by three with the appointments of: Cox Communications Inc. SVP of Customer Experience Paul Cronin; CableLabs President and CEO Phil McKinney and newly named Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) Regional VP, Mountain Region, Kyle McSlarrow. They'll serve three-year terms. (See McSlarrow Takes Over Comcast's Mountain Region and Ex-HP CTO Named CableLabs CEO.)

    — Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable

    (6)  | 
    Comment  | 
    Print  | 
  • Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
    Jeff Baumgartner
    50%
    50%
    Jeff Baumgartner,
    User Rank: Light Beer
    12/5/2012 | 5:18:21 PM
    re: Icahn: Netflix Sale Has 'Crossed Our Minds'


    He's certainly placing a bet that he can do well with another agitation.


    We haven't gotten a response (yet), but here's the first comment so far from Netflix, according to the NY Times: "We have many shareholders, now including Mr. Icahn, and we're alwasy open to their perspective on how to build on our success."


    Which doesn't say anything other than an acknowledgement that they've noticed. JB  


     

    elgato990
    50%
    50%
    elgato990,
    User Rank: Light Beer
    12/5/2012 | 5:18:21 PM
    re: Icahn: Netflix Sale Has 'Crossed Our Minds'


    So he is betting that Netflix is the next Instagram or OMGpop or Skype?   Where the strategy is to attack someone with a money losing business in hopes that they buy you for an irrational sum of money?  

    ethertype
    50%
    50%
    ethertype,
    User Rank: Light Sabre
    12/5/2012 | 5:18:20 PM
    re: Icahn: Netflix Sale Has 'Crossed Our Minds'


    The story of Netflix streaming to date is "great platform, shame about the content."  It's hardly their fault; their early dominance painted a huge target on their back, leading content owners to cripple them by withholding and overpricing content.  


    So if someone is going to buy Netflix, they will have to solve the content problem, most likely by blowing up the one-size-fits all Netflix price-value model, paying more and charging more for premium content.


    Buyer type 1 -- Large multichannel video provider (MVPD) that naturally already has strong content relationships but hasn't figured out streaming yet.  Could DBS providers be at the top of this list?


    Buyer type 2 -- Strong consumer brand, looking to jump start a weak video business. Maybe Sony or Google?


    Buyer type 3 -- Consortium of content players, most likely Hulu, who decide they're ready to accelerate their bypass play, even while they individually continue to act cozy with the MVPDs.


    Discuss.

    shygye75
    50%
    50%
    shygye75,
    User Rank: Light Beer
    12/5/2012 | 5:18:19 PM
    re: Icahn: Netflix Sale Has 'Crossed Our Minds'


    Having Carl Icahn show up on your shareholders roster is like having Gordon Ramsey walk into your restaurant, camera crew in tow. It means things are bad, and they aren't likely to get better for you in the long run.

    shygye75
    50%
    50%
    shygye75,
    User Rank: Light Beer
    12/5/2012 | 5:18:16 PM
    re: Icahn: Netflix Sale Has 'Crossed Our Minds'


    Gordo showed up at two restaurants in my area (Bergen County, NJ). One place closed in less than a year, and the other shut down after the chef/owner jumped off the George Washington Bridge. As far as Netflix becoming something other than a distribution channel by creating its own content, best of luck on that. I would guess that the failure rate for content producers is even higher than for start-up restaurants.

    AESerm
    50%
    50%
    AESerm,
    User Rank: Light Beer
    12/5/2012 | 5:18:16 PM
    re: Icahn: Netflix Sale Has 'Crossed Our Minds'


    That's a frightful image, but Chef Ramsey also on occasion turns a restaurant around, non? That said, not sure I follow Icahn, despite what he sees as "self-evident" and "almost obvious." He points to $2.5b in rev domestically and the prospect of using that for fresh content. Net income in 2011 was $226m. Is that what he wants to tap? 

    Flash Poll
    From The Founder
    It's clear to me that the communications industry is divided into two types of people, and only one is living in the real world.
    LRTV Custom TV
    The WiFi Road to Riches – 1

    10|21|14   |   10:15   |   (0) comments


    SCTE Director of Advanced Technologies Steve Harris discusses WiFi deployments, drivers, challenges and advances, including 802.11ac, carrier-grade WiFi, community WiFi, Hotspot 2.0, Passpoint, WiFi-First and voice-over-WiFi.
    LRTV Custom TV
    Advantech Accelerates 100G Traffic Handling

    10|17|14   |   7:56   |   (0) comments


    Paul Stevens from Advantech explains why handling 100GbE needs a whole new platform design approach and how Advantech is addressing the needs of equipment providers and carriers to give them the flexibility and performance they will need for SDN and NFV deployment.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    Holland's Imtech Traffic & Infra Discusses Huawei's ICT Solution and Services

    10|16|14   |   4:49   |   (0) comments


    Dimitry Theebe is from the business unit at Imtech Traffic & Infra which delivers communications solutions for transportations. His partnershp with Huawei began about a years ago. In this video, Theebe speaks more about this partnership and what he hopes to accomplish with Huawei.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    Huawei's Comprehensive Storage Solutions Vital for SVR

    10|16|14   |   6:16   |   (0) comments


    SVR Information Technology provides cloud services for academic and special sectors. With Huawei's support, SVR and Yildiz Technical University has established Turkey's largest and most advanced High Performance Computing system. CSO Ismail Cem Aslan talks about what he hopes Huawei's OceanStor storage system will bring for him.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    Mexico's Servitron's Impression of Huawei at CCW 2014

    10|16|14   |   6:35   |   (0) comments


    Servitron is a network operator in Mexico that has been in the trunking industry for the past 20 years. Its COO, Ing. Ragnar Trillo O., explains at Critical Communications World 2014 that his company has been interested in the long-term evolution of LTE technology and its adoption for TETRA.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    Building a Better Dubai

    10|16|14   |   2:06   |   (0) comments


    Abdulla Ahmed Al Falasi is the director of commercial affairs, a telecommunications coordinator for the government of Dubai. Their areas of service span across multiple industries, including police, safety, shopping malls and more. In this video, Abdulla talks about his department's work with Huawei.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    Huawei Lights Up Malaysia Partner Maju Nusa

    10|16|14   |   1:59   |   (0) comments


    Malaysia's Maju Nusa is an enterprise partner to Huawei in networking, route switches and telco equipment. At this year's Critical Communications World in Singapore, CTO Pushpender Singh talks about what Huawei's eLTE solutions mean to his company and for Malaysia.
    LRTV Custom TV
    Evolving From HFC to FTTH Networks

    10|15|14   |   2:19   |   (0) comments


    Cisco's Todd McCrum delves into the future of cable's HFC plant, examining how DOCSIS 3.1 and advanced video compression will extend its life and how the IP video transition will usher in GPON and EPON over FTTH.
    LRTV Custom TV
    Exploring the Future of Cable Access

    10|15|14   |   6:23   |   (0) comments


    Cisco's Brett Wingo looks at where cable access architectures are heading, discussing the impact of DOCSIS 3.1, CCAP, Remote PHY, SDN, virtualization of cable networks and related technologies.
    LRTV Custom TV
    Optimizing & Monetizing WiFi

    10|15|14   |   5:53   |   (0) comments


    Cisco's Vince Pandolfi outlines the reasons for cable WiFi's rapid growth, lays out the issues with the technology and explains the new Cisco tools that can help operators monitor and improve their WiFi delivery.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    Emulex & Huawei Collaboration Mutually Beneficial

    10|14|14   |   4:17   |   (0) comments


    US company Emulex collaborates with Huawei in areas such as blade servers and workload documentation. Mike Heumann of Emulex believes that Huawei has done incredibly well moving from a telecom company into servers and networks, working closely with customers to realize their needs.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    Chile's VZION Looks Forward to Seeing More of Huawei

    10|14|14   |   4:43   |   (0) comments


    VZION is a systems integrator company in Chile with a focus on virtulization technology. In this video, Cesar Alcacibar talks about the challenges in virtualization and how Huawei helps his company to achieve the best results possible. Alcacibar is expecting more adoption and integration of Huawei technologies in Chile.
    Upcoming Live Events
    October 29, 2014, New York City
    November 6, 2014, Santa Clara
    November 11, 2014, Atlanta, GA
    December 2, 2014, New York City
    December 3, 2014, New York City
    December 9-10, 2014, Reykjavik, Iceland
    June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
    Infographics
    WhoIsHostingThis.com presents six of the world's most extreme WiFi hotspots, enabling the most epic selfies you can imagine.
    Hot Topics
    Forget the Internet, Brace for Skynet
    Stephen Saunders, 10/15/2014
    HBO Will Go OTT in 2015
    Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 10/15/2014
    Google: Carriers & Cloud Providers Need to Cooperate
    Mitch Wagner, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading, 10/16/2014
    Could Data Be the New 'Currency'?
    Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-chief, 10/16/2014
    CBS Takes OTT Plunge
    Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 10/16/2014
    Like Us on Facebook
    Twitter Feed