TV Broadcast & Cable Networks Industry Profile

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Excerpt from TV Broadcast & Cable Networks Industry Profile

Companies in this industry broadcast television programs for free to the public and for a fee to cable subscribers. In the US, major broadcast TV networks are ABC, NBC, and ViacomCBS, while leading cable networks include ESPN, Fox News, MSNBC, and USA Network. Other leading companies outside US include ITV (UK), Mediaset (Italy), NHK or Japan Broadcasting Corporation (Japan), and RTL Group (Luxembourg).

Global television advertising revenue will reach $185 billion in 2021 compared to $181 billion in 2019, according to a prediction from Deloitte. Global revenue from pay-TV subscriptions, including cable and satellite services, peaked in 2016 at $205 billion and will fall to $171 billion in 2024, according to Digital TV Research.

In the US the TV broadcast and cable network industry includes about 2,900 establishments (single-location companies and units of multi-location companies) with combined annual revenue of about $145 billion.

The industry doesn't include companies that broadcast primarily on the internet, produce and sell taped TV programs, distribute cable and other TV programs, or use TV as a retail outlet. TV program production and distribution is covered in a separate industry profile.


Business advertising, program popularity, and consumer demographics drive demand. The profitability of individual companies depends on advertising volume, programming mix, and efficient operations. Large companies have advantages of market dominance, often owning the only TV stations in a geographic area. Small companies can compete ...

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