Welcome to the cable news roundup, T.G.I.F. edition.
Netflix Inc. (Nasdaq: NFLX) is reeling a bit after cutting third-quarter subscriber guidance and failing to renew with Starz Entertainment LLC , but it got a nice endorsement of sorts from a top cable MSO on Thursday. "I'd love to sell Netflix as a service on my cable system. Why not?" Cablevision Systems Corp. (NYSE: CVC) COO Tom Rutledge said at a Bank of America conference, noting that he'd like to sell traditional cable networks on an à la carte basis if only they'd allow it. Cablevision doesn't sell Netflix, but its new Optimum Link product does let customers shuttle Netflix content from the PCs to set-tops for display on TVs. This video tutorial shows how Cablevision pulls it off. (See Now Showing: Your PC Content on Cablevision.)
Netflix Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos pledged Wednesday that Netflix will do a better job anticipating subscriber reactions brought on by "radical" changes like pricing and tier adjustments. "To precisely forecast and predict behaviors of that many people on fairly radical change is something we'll get better at all the time," he said as Netflix stock was getting hammered. (See Netflix Chops 1M Subs From Q3 Forecast.)
Cable and telecom providers face an "affordability crisis" as they try to gain and retain customers on the bottom half of the financial spectrum, Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. Inc.
Analyst Craig Moffett says in a research note. "After the necessities of food, shelter, transportation and healthcare each month, the bottom 40% of U.S. households have already exhausted all of their disposable income," leaving nothing left for items like clothing, cable or phone. "Relatively few other sectors have this kind of economic exposure to the bottom half," he adds.
Canoe Ventures LLC is shoring up its ranks as it preps its big launch push. Following a recent reorg atop the company food chain, the cross-MSO advanced ad venture confirmed the hiring of Jonathan Boker (late of Tandberg Television and NBCUniversal LLC ) to GM of ITV solutions, and Sanjay Patel (late of Nickelodeon, E! and ESPN) to VP of marketing; and the appointment of Chris Pizzurro to GM of VoD solutions (he was Canoe's VP of business development and product strategy).
Some more proof of cats and dogs living together. Charter Communications Inc. 's ad sales unit has inked a deal to sell AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T)'s U-verse local ad inventory in St. Louis starting on Oct. 31 on more than 50 channels, with additional markets on deck.