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Discovery Content to Go Mobile

SILVER SPRING, Md. — Viewers may be able to start looking for key Discovery Communications programs on their tablet devices in the next few months, if CEO David Zaslav has anything to do with it.

Discovery has been one of the lone holdouts in the TV Everywhere space — no distributor anywhere in the U.S. has authentication rights to its programming — mainly because the programmer couldn’t agree on the value of the service or how it is measured. That, the Discovery CEO said, is about to change.

With about 10% cable market share — up from 4% about six years ago — Discovery has increased clout at the negotiating table. And though TV Everywhere was not part of its more-recent renewal deals, it will be in the future. Zaslav added that the networks also could strike standalone authentication deals with distributors.

“I think there’s a decent chance we’ll do some TV Everywhere deals over the next few months,” Zaslav said on a conference call with analysts to discuss fourth-quarter results last week.

The fourth quarter was another strong one for Discovery, with total revenue up 8% and cash flow increasing 9%. Domestic advertising sales rose 9% in the period.