“Since the second impeachment trial, Fox News has regained its leadership position and has maintained that leadership position ever since, averaging 40 percent of the total day’s share of prime-time cable news hearings. Murdoch said, according to Aiera Advisors transcripts.
The company had predicted that Fox News odds would drop after the election, he said, but was caught off guard when election uncertainty and the Jan. 6 insurgency lowered odds more than expected.
“At that point, what we weren’t anticipating was the short but intensified news cycle that immediately followed the election and clearly benefited our competitors,” he added.
After praising Fox New’s renewed leadership in scoring, Murdoch referred to the success of “Gutfeld!” the late-night show launched by the network on April 5.
“The exclamation mark is apropos because since its launch, the show has averaged over 1.5 million viewers per night,” Murdoch said.
“To put this in context, Gutfeld attracts an audience roughly the same size as Jimmy KimmelJames (Jimmy) Christian Kimmel ‘The Trump Effect’ Boosts Hollywood’s Political Hopes Election Watchdogs Urge Jimmy Kimmel To Drop Plans To Host MyPillow CEO Biden, Harris, Harry And Meghan Added To ‘Vax Live : The concert to bring the world together »MORE Live and bigger than The Tonight Show, ”he added.
Murdoch then turned to Fox Nation, Fox News Media’s streaming offering, saying the service had seen a 40% increase in subscriber growth since mid-February.
He attributed the growth to content like Tucker CarlsonTucker CarlsonDNC Gathers Opposition Research on Over 20 Potential GOP Presidential Candidates McCarthy Confirms Living Arrangements With Luntz After Council To Tucker Carlson Tucker Carlson Targets McCarthy For Links To GOP Pollster Frank Luntz MOREThe company’s video podcast and said the company will invest in new “programming for Fox Nation in the coming quarters.”
However, Scott Robson, research analyst at S&P Global Market Intelligence and research analyst at S&P Global Market Intelligence, said it should be noted that Murdoch did not provide further details on Fox Nation’s performance.
“The FOX Nation subscriber count, which has increased 40 percent since mid-February, is definitely a nice bump,” said Robson. “But I don’t know how many subscriptions that gives them overall. The fact that they do not offer this data point leads me to believe that it is still quite low. “
Fox Corp is also expanding into sports and sports betting, Murdoch said.
The company is in the process of acquiring the sports information and opinion platform Outkick, he said, and plans to launch an NFL-branded video-on-demand channel this coming season.
Murdoch also announced that the NFL has appointed Fox Bet, the company’s online betting platform, as the NFL-licensed sports book operator.
Tubi, the company’s other streaming platform, is also doing well, Murdoch said, reaching 40 million monthly active users.
Murdoch said the company plans to add more Fox content to Tubi, as well as original content, and recently signed a deal with Scripps and Cox to add more local TV news to the streaming platform.
“Tubi will transport nearly 100 local stations in 2021, covering 50 [designated market areas] and providing the most robust local news offering of any free streaming service, ”said Murdoch.
On the financial side, some measures of Fox Corp’s performance increased while others declined in the third quarter of the company’s fiscal year.
Revenue from affiliate fees – the money cable companies pay Fox to carry their networks – rose 10%, the company reported. However, advertising revenue fell nearly 24% from the same quarter last year, from $ 1.57 billion to $ 1.2 billion.
The company blamed the drop in ad revenue, and the resulting 6.4% drop in overall revenue, on not owning the Super Bowl 2021 broadcast.
Robson said the company’s revenue numbers made sense given viewer rates. Cable networks have seen their overall rating decline since the start of the year, although Fox is less than CNN or MSNBC.
“Cable network ad revenue down 7 percent looks okay given that ratings are down about 30 percent across the board,” Robson explained. “Affiliate revenues have been roughly in line with expectations given the price increases incorporated into distribution agreements signed last year. “
Overall, Fox Corp’s third-quarter fiscal year net income was $ 582 million.