"Street Signs": The Big Picture
Named to the post in late 2004, Clasen is an industry veteran who also worked for Comcast.
On what's called the "cable-satellite-telco channels side," the company offers 13 major premium movie channels, including the flagship Starz and Encore brands — which serve 15 million and 27 million subscribers respectively. The premium service will soon be adding original content to its offerings. Starz also operates on-demand services and a high-definition channel. The company launched its much publicized Vongo is IPTV subscription movie download service in 2006.
Clasen says the goal is to "aggregate audiences by distributing programming across multiple platforms.”
Liberty Global, formed in early 2005, is the result of the merger of UnitedGlobalCom (UGC), Europe’s largest cable operator, and Liberty Media International, a spin-off of John Malone’s Liberty Media empire. It has operations in 18 countries and 23.5 million homes, and is the largest cable operator outside the U.S.
Liberty is increasing digital cable services more aggressively throughout Europe to stave off IPTV deployments by its leading telco rivals.
Ahead of the Cable conference, Liberty Global executives outlined plans to launch or expand digital video services in the Netherlands, Ireland, Austria, Hungary, Poland, and other countries during 2007.
Liberty Global is focused on introducing advanced digital video services in its European and Japanese markets this year, including high-definition TV (HDTV), digital video recorders (DVRs), and video-on-demand (VOD).
Liberty Global, which introduced VOIP service in Europe two years ago, said it now offers IP phone service in 12 markets.
Bridget Baker, President, NBC Universal TV Networks Distribution
Appointed president of this arm of NBC UNiversal in December 2006, Baker oversees the distribution of the TV Networks portfolio -- Bravo, Chiller, CNBC, CNBC World, MSNBC, SCI-FI, ShopNBC, Telemundo, Telemundo Puerto Rico, mun2, Sleuth, Universal HD, USA Network, and NBC Weather Plus. (NBC Universal is a subsidiary of General Electric.)
Erin Burnett had a chance to speak with Baker at the event on a host of issues including, how to monetize mobile content with ads and the place "webisodes" have within the demographic of broadband programming. Who will watch and why? Also, the two discuss the winning recipe behind USA, the country's number one basic cable network. Could it be its Emmy award winning original content? (One hint: Think obsessive-compulsive-disorder-afflicted investigator.)