NBCU, Sony Pictures Television Prep Encores For CES

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New York—Content will once again marry technology at the International CES, with NBC Universal and Sony Pictures Television returning to the show next year with major presences, officials said Tuesday. 

At a press preview here, the Consumer Electronics Association announced that NBCU will have an encore as the official broadcast partner for the 2009 International CES, which takes place in Las Vegas Jan. 8 to11, while Sony Picture Television will return as an exhibitor.

The CEA also projected Tuesday that despite the battered economy and shattered consumer confidence, consumer-electronics sales will increase 3.5% in the fourth quarter, the holiday season. Sales for products such as flat-panel TV sets, mobile phones and GPS systems are expected to be especially strong, according to the CEA.

As for NBCU, it will debut an interactive and multi-faceted show floor exhibition at CES, spotlighting the wide range of digital programming produced by its television, cable and motion picture properties. In addition, as CES’ “Official Broadcast Partner,” select NBC Universal broadcast and cable entities will broadcast live from the CES exhibition floor.

At the press conference George Kliavkoff, NBCU’s chief digital officer, said that NBC Nightly News With Brian Williams, The TodayShow, the syndicated Access Hollywood and CNBC’s Maria Bartiromo will all be broadcasting live from the show floor.

Also at the press conference Steve Mosko, president of Sony Pictures Television, said his company will be back with a major presence on the show floor, after its first appearance last year. The company will showcase its wide variety of content across all platforms, and in celebration of the 25th Anniversary of Jeopardy!, SPT will film 11 episodes of Celebrity Jeopardy! on a specially built set on the CES show floor next to Sony Pictures Television’s booth.

The game show will use the CES to unveil its new “never-seen-before set,” Mosko said.

In addition Dr. Oz, from the new show Sony Pictures Television is syndicating for Oprah Winfrey’s Harpo, will also appear at the company’s booth, according to Mosko.

Almost 9,000 executives from the broadcast and entertainment industries attended the 2008 CES to meet with manufacturers and experience the latest trends in digital entertainment technology, according to CEA president and CEO Gary Shapiro.

"With major content exhibitors, including NBC Universal's dynamic exhibition and live broadcasts, and dozens of conference sessions featuring high level industry executives and the latest industry trends, the 2009 International CES is a must attend event for everyone in the content community," Shapiro said in a prepared statement.

As for the CEA’s fourth-quarter forecast of 3.5% growth in consumer-electronics sales, Shapiro said, “It’s a strong indication we have a lot of faith in consume electronics.”

The 2009 International CES will feature more than 200 conference sessions, focused on key industry trends and markets. A variety of sessions focused specifically on content and digital entertainment will take place Jan. 7, and will include Billboard's Digital Music Live, P2P Media Summit, CES Mobile Entertainment, CES Game Power and the CES Reinventing Advertising Conference.

The 2009 International CES is expecting 130,000 attendees and will feature more than 2,700 exhibitors introducing the latest consumer technology products throughout 30 product categories.

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