ADOTAS – This is an abundant time of year for CBS Corp. March Madness has lent itself to being an online juggernaut for the entertainment firm and Les Moonves; the company’s president was honest with his assumptions as to why this fact is true. “People sit at their computers and waste away their afternoons watching basketball games while their bosses are looking the other way,” he said to analysts in New York. “We are having our best year, by far. Ever.”
CBS started offering games online for free three years ago in what almost seemed like an experiment to see how many people would watch online at work.
The response two years ago almost shut down the network’s servers. Revenues skyrocketed from $250,000 the year before (under the subscription model) to about $4 million from advertising alone, reports Globe and Mail.
The company said yesterday that it anticipates bringing in $23 million in ad revenue over the next few weeks alone. Ad space for the online broadcasts was also reported to be 95% sold old by late February.
CBS and the NCAA made a deal ten years ago which has allowed the network no restrictions on the digital rights to the games and how they could be exploited.
Jason Kint, SVP of CBSSports.com was quoted in G&M to say “We’re very fortunate that the rights with the NCAA, back when they were done in the late nineties, were all encompassing. The people in charge appreciated where this was headed.”
The network plans to break last year’s record of 1.4 million unique users.