Julia Boorstin joined CNBC in May 2006 as a general assignment reporter. Later that year, she became CNBC's media and entertainment reporter working from CNBC's Los Angeles Bureau. Boorstin covers media with a special focus on the intersection of media and technology. In addition, she reported a documentary on the future of television for the network, "Stay Tuned…The Future of TV."
Boorstin joined CNBC from Fortune magazine where she was a business writer and reporter since 2000, covering a wide range of stories on everything from media companies to retail to business trends. During that time, she was also a contributor to "Street Life," a live market wrap-up segment on CNN Headline News.
In 2003, 2004 and 2006, The Journalist and Financial Reporting newsletter named Boorstin to the "TJFR 30 under 30" list of the most promising business journalists under 30 years old. She has also worked for the State Department's delegation to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and for Vice President Gore's domestic policy office.
She graduated with honors from Princeton University with a B.A. in history. She was also an editor of The Daily Princetonian.
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A credit crunch affects any type of leveraged buyout--debt becomes more expensive and harder to obtain, requiring more equity, making returns lower. Considering how many leveraged deals Hollywood has made, that industry should be no exception. Wall Street players--private equity, hedge funds, investment banks--have put together more than $12 billion dollars of financing for the Hollywood studios' 'slates' of films.
I can't help but comment on Viacom's earnings. On Thursday, the media giant beat Wall Street estimates, thanks largely to the filmed entertainment division's profit quadrupling. But the studio (Paramount and DreamWorks) is a much smaller part of the company than the 'Media Networks' division, which includes MTV, VH1, Nickelodeon, Spike TV, etc. I'd say Viacom's largest challenge moving forward is growing its ad revenue on these cable networks...
IAC/InterActive Corp reported its second quarter earnings today and net income was up 78%, but Wall Street wasn't impressed -- the jump was thanks solely to divestiture and lower acquisition costs. Looking only at continuing operations (excluding stock compensation and those divestiture costs), the quarter's earnings were 31 cents, a penny less than the year-ago quarter, and two cents less than the analyst consensus. Revenues grew six percent, less than analysts expected.
CBS announced second-quarter earnings that disappointed on the top line, beat expectations on the bottom line, and landed flat with growth-hungry Wall Street. Revenue disappointed--down 3% to $3.37 billion on a loss of TV revenue from shutting down UPN and the timing of the NCAA basketball tournament.
Despite all the concern about the credit crunch, a big private equity deal seems to be moving forward. On Monday, John Malone, Chairman of Liberty Media tells the Financial Times he's considering enterting the auction for Richard Branson's Virgin Media. This could be a huge deal--the largest cable transaction outside the U.S.
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The buzz about Fox's "The Simpsons Movie" has been so hot--and tracking of knowledge of the film so broad--that Fox is expanding the film's debut to 3,922 theaters and about 5,700 screens. Fox is cautiously expecting to hit the mid $30 million dollar range, but the average prediction for the $70 million budget film's opening weekend is over $57 million dollars, and it's sure to take the top spot.
While Wall Street weathers the market drop, Comic Con--the annual comic convention--is at a full roar in San Diego California. And the highlight to any true fanboy is the bit of information producer J.J. Abrams is releasing about his mysterious Paramount Pictures' movie. The trailer premiered right before "Transformers," a guaranteed blockbuster, with that obsessive young male audience, primed to get psyched for a big new idea--perhaps a big new monster. In a summer of sequels, this new movie looked fresh, and there was no title.
In my previous post, I wrote about how Facebook is being sued by the creators of Connect-U. But here's a twist: Facebook is also reportedly SUING them right back. I just interviewed Fortune Magazine Senior Editor (and a former colleague of mine), David Kirkpatrick who's spent quite a bit of time with Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook's managing team recently.
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