These are the most read stories of the week.
Data Dispatch: Cable analysts see Q3 margins expanding as US broadband subs grow
While cable operators are expected to continue losing video subscribers, analysts still expect a strong third quarter for margins at large U.S. cable companies as a broadband-first strategy continues to drive gains. MoffettNathanson pay TV analyst Craig Moffett said in a research report this month that cable margin expectations are too low across the board and that video losses could help drive margins higher.
Cross-border video content rules in flux as Brexit deadline approaches
Video streaming companies are on the alert for potential disruption to the way their platforms function in Europe as a result of Brexit, they told S&P Global Market Intelligence. The U.K.'s departure from the European Union and subsequent withdrawal from the Digital Single Market could result in copyright restrictions on content ranging from paid music to video apps.
Viacom CEO: Mobile-first video will thrive with 5G
Sure, there have been some "false starts," but mobile video is the future of video, Viacom Inc. CEO Bob Bakish said during an Oct. 22 keynote address at Mobile World Congress Los Angeles. There has been plenty of user growth, but many industry analysts still question the economics of companies, such as Maker Studios Inc. and AwesomenessTV Inc., which distribute their content via YouTube. Bakish argued that it is now time for short-form and mobile-first entertainment — and Viacom is looking for partners.
SoftBank's WeWork bailout risks US$38B Vision Fund 2 pledge
SoftBank Group Corp.'s decision to invest about US$9.5 billion in WeWork Cos. Inc. could make sticking to its US$38 billion Vision Fund 2 pledge much harder, analysts said. The Japanese company announced Oct. 22 a funding package that includes a tender offer of up to US$3 billion and additional investment of US$5 billion in WeWork.
NBCU will 'flex' promotional power for OTT service Peacock amid competition
As NBCUniversal Media LLC gears up for the launch of Peacock next April, the free ad-supported video-on-demand service will benefit from inclusion on parent company Comcast Corp.'s streaming offering for internet-only customers. NBCU CEO Steve Burke told analysts on a Oct. 24 earnings call that Peacock "will be front and center" on Xfinity Flex, which is included with an Xfinity Internet-only subscription.