Carey Says TV Ad Worries 'Overblown'

Related: Fox Reports Lower Net as Revenue Grows

Chase Carey, COO of 21st Century Fox, says concerns about the TV advertising business are overblown.

Speaking on the company’s conference call with analysts Tuesday, Carey said that while there was a lot of talk about money shifting to digital, “the issue is the economy.”

Carey said that in the ad market pricing is up while volume is soft and he attributed that softness to a lack of business confidence.

He added that Fox’s core cable networks were generating solid ad revenue growth.

Carey added that while TV ratings are down, the numbers didn’t reflect the popularity of content, but instead were the result of more viewing in ways that are “not reflected in traditional network ratings.”

Addressing cord cutting, Carey said that “the bundle still has real legs,” but that new ways of bringing content to customer created opportunities for the company by giving it a way to “engage with the consumer more directly.”

Carey said consumers still want a bundle, but might prefer a different bundle or proposition. He said the key was to build those choices carefully in a way that doesn’t undermine more established business models.

“In a period of change, we see a glass half full opportunity,” he said.

While saying a Fox over-the-top offering was not imminent, Carey said “we’re looking at everything."

“We’re not just responding to third parties. We’re making our own analysis of what consumers want,” he said. "We’re not simply going to be reactive.”

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.