Although ratings for Conan O'Brien's new show on TBS have not yet been released -- a situation probably related to the fact that it has not yet debuted -- ad buyers have already been buying spots on the show and paying the kind of prices for them that NBC gets with the Tonight show, according to Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes. Speaking during a conference call on Wednesday to discuss the company's second-quarter earnings report, Bewkes said that O'Brien's show, scheduled to debut on November 8, is drawing ad rates "on parity with broadcast." In reporting on his comment, the Hollywood Reporter observed "It's the first time experts remember a cable show outside of sports and kids programming reaching pricing parity with broadcast content." THR quoted Linda Yaccarino, head of ad sales for Turner Entertainment as confirming that O'Brien's has become "the first [cable] show to break through that barrier. ... After all, it's not the Conan Cable Show , but the Conan O'Brien Show . Meanwhile Time Warner, whose cable outlets also include CNN, HBO, TNT, and the Cartoon Network, and whose other holdings include Warner Bros. and Time Inc., reported a 7 percent increase in second-quarter earnings to $562 million on revenue of $6.4 billion.

05/08/2010