Comcast: Depth Outweighs Content Cost Increases

Exec Says Content Utility Helps Drive Value

Content cost increases, while troublesome, are outweighed by the benefits received from increased utility including video on demand rights and TV Everywhere,  Comcast senior vice president of investor relations Jason Armstrong told an industry audience.

At the Goldman Sachs Communacopia Conference in New York, Armstrong said the cable operator has been very aggressive in trying to reduce programming costs – which are expected to rise by about 9% this year – but at the same time has been equally bent on acquiring digital rights for TV Everywhere and video on demand, establishing a “deep content bench”  which enhances value.

“So, the utility to the average consumer that we think we’ve put together has, we think, more than outweigh the price increases,” Armstrong said.

Those content deals have helped boost Comcast’s programming library significantly,. Armstrong said the cable operators has the rights to about 100 Nielsen rated shows on demand, with the majority of them available in full-season. Inside the home the cable giant has TV Everywhere rights to virtually every channel on its lineup and more than 50 channels are available outside the customer’s home.