Marcus: ‘Mission Accomplished’ With Lakers RSN

TWC Chief Says Controversial RSN Proving Better Than Alternative 3/05/2013 11:41 AM Eastern

Time Warner Cable chief operating officer Rob Marcus said its controversial Los Angeles Lakes regional sports network – Time Warner Cable SportsNet -- has already passed the first litmus test in its short history: it's cheaper than a carriage deal with a third-party RSN.

At the Deutsche Bank Media, Internet and Telecom conference in Palm Beach, Fla., Marcus said the MSO had a simple formula for its RSN strategy: if the costs of producing the network, less the fees and ad revenue it brought in, were lower than the affiliate fees it would have to pay a third party RSN, it would be considered a success.

“Now having launched the network, having done our affiliation deals with the other major distributors, having begun the process of selling ads on the network, I can comfortably say, ‘Mission Accomplished,’” Marcus said. “The net price that we are paying for the Lakers is lower than what we think we would have otherwise paid to a third party RSN and significantly lower than what we pay for comparable RSNs elsewhere. I am very pleased with the way the strategy has worked out and the approach to the Dodgers is to take a page out of the same playbook.”

TWC launched Time Warner Cable Sports Net and its sister Spanish language channel in the Los Angeles market in October. It plans on launching another RSN, with Major League Baseball’s Los Angeles Dodgers, in the market next year.