Virus Concerns Make A+E Take Upfront Virtual

A+E Networks has become the latest company in the TV business to alter upfront presentation plans because of concerns over the Coronavirus.

Instead of having media buyers attend a live event on March 25, A+E said it will have a series of virtual presentations that will be conducted on an agency--by agency basis.

“The health, safety and well-being of our clients, colleagues and our industry is our top priority. A+E Networks is leaning-in to our culture of flexibility - one of the business mandates to operate in today’s world, and certainly a necessity underscored in our current environment,” said Paul Buccieri, group president at A+E Networks.

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“Our sales force looks forward to bringing the A+E Networks’ Virtual Upfront Presentation directly to our clients in a new way. We’re ready to showcase our portfolio of high-performing mega-brands, recapping some of the amazing success we’ve had in the last year, previewing upcoming shows we’re excited about, introducing our incredible roster of talent, and outlining our plans for 2021 across A&E, History and Lifetime,” he said.

Buccieri noted that the upfront presentation is just part of the programmer’s ad sales effort, which goes on 52 weeks of the year.

Earlier, Fox News and Comcast’s FreeWheel unit canceled planned upfront events.

The big broadcast network presentations take place in May. There have been no changes announced to those events at this point.

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.