Viacom, Inc. (NASDAQ:VIA) Q2 2016 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript
Apr 28, 2016 • 08:30 am ET
[Operator Instructions] We will take our first question from Alexia Quadrani with JPMorgan.
Thank you. Could you provide a bit more color on the domestic ad revenue in the quarter? There seems to be a lot of moving pieces here. On the one hand, you've got improving ratings from your key networks, a healthy scatter market. On the flip side, you've got to make good for previous shortfalls, reduction in ad loads, and still some softness in some of your networks like Comedy Central, MTV. I guess to the extent you can help us maybe piece together some of these different factors, how much they influence the numbers, and really, what is the delta that we should look for ahead to see improvement?
Thank you, Alexia. Well, as we mentioned, we are reducing ad load on several of our networks, and we believe that will improve our brand health overall and help us as we go into the upfront where we'd like to be very strong. There is a strong demand in the scatter market, and pricing is very strong in the scatter market. But as you point out, we have limited inventory available to take advantage of that right now. And what will drive improvement, in addition to several of the networks that I mentioned improving, will be the continuing improvement at Comedy Central and MTV, which are obviously big networks for us, and where we have both have stepped up our level of programming. We have revitalized the leadership at MTV, and a new direction that advertisers welcome, and we will be able to benefit from as we head into the upfront.
Additionally, again relating to the upfront, we now have much enhanced capabilities, driven by our Viacom Vantage and other products, which will help us drive pricing as we go into the upfront and beyond. So we think this is a period where we can, as I mentioned in my remarks, we hope to see it is very early in the quarter, but we hope to see some improvement this quarter. And we are very focused on improving the overall brand health and going advertisers who really view us as the leading way to reach the key demos they want to reach. So we certainly feel very optimistic about not just the upfront but what that bodes for the broadcast year ahead as we continue to seek improvement as the rest of this year unfolds.
And Alexia, I mean, the unit load reduction is an important step, as Philippe mentioned. If we didn't adjust for the unit loads, we would have been down around 3%.
Okay. That's helpful. And just a clarification, if I can, on one of the comments in the opening remarks. I think you said on the domestic affiliate side that you hope to get sort of a mid-single-digit range from both traditional and sort of overall. I guess is that correct? Can you get to the single just traditional load, and overall also for