Single-digits for sydnie upfront

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Fall TV sales action in cable, too; ABC, CBS cinch some early deals

There was significant sales movement in TV's upfront marketplace last week, particularly in adult syndication and cable.

The pace of TV's advance-sales season is "a lot less frenzied than last year," said one cable network sales executive.


Although the broadcast networks have had preliminary talks with a number of advertisers, sales activity won't break until after fall prime-time schedules are announced. That process begins today with NBC.

While some syndicators and ad agency media buyers were at loggerheads over cost-per-thousand increases, a number of deals were cut, most in the low- to mid-single-digit range.

TeleVest, New York, which historically moves early in syndication, is said to have closed deals with All American, King World's Camelot and Paramount's Premier Ad Sales. But TeleVest, known as a tough negotiator, has mostly accepted only flat to low single-digit CPM hikes, said one syndicator.

Leo Burnett USA, Chicago, has several cable deals. One with Turner Broadcasting System seemed imminent at press time.


Turner was getting "at least a 5% CPM increase," said one media executive. "That's a bit low," claimed another executive close to the company.

Young & Rubicam and Grey Advertising, both New York, also had cable deals in the works.

In broadcast, insiders said ABC closed a few pre-upfront deals. While ABC executives aren't talking, another top network executive said there have been deals "with advertisers who really haven't been on ABC before."

It would be difficult for ABC to have closed a pre-upfront deal with a major incumbent advertiser because the network is certainly looking for a significant CPM increase and most buyers would be loath to go along at this point.

CBS has closed a pre-upfront deal or two, but those are said to be renewals of long-term pacts.

Copyright May 1996 Crain Communications Inc.

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