Fox Banks $2 Billion In Upfront Sales

Demo ratings leader Fox, which on Thursday was the first broadcast network to start cutting upfront deals, just became the first network to wrap its upfront sales. “With the strength and stability of our schedule and the exciting addition of The X Factor and our other new series, Fox has concluded its primetime upfront sales, achieving significant growth in both volume and pricing, consistent with our position as the number one network,” the network said in a statement. Fox representatives would not comment on the specifics, but I hear that year-to-year CPM increases were in the 10-11% range set by the network’s first deals last week. The volume rose at almost the same pace. It is said to be up about 10% from last year’s haul of $1.8 billion-$1.9 billion to just shy of $2 billion. I hear Fox didn’t hold back a lot of inventory, selling about 80% of its available primetime entertainment programming ad time on the upfront market, an industry standard. The second highest-rated network, CBS, has been seeking larger CPM increases, said to be around 18%, and has not budged so far. “Fox plays their game,” CBS Corp. CEO Leslie Moonves said this morning at an investor conference. “We play our game, and I like our game. We’re not going to sell at 9% or 10%.”

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