Retirement Living Television has sold its carriage contracts to Scripps’s Newsy service, a news service that is primarily streaming and online content. Newsy is already in 14 million homes but the deal with RLTV will boost it to 40 million.
“Newsy has already made a name for itself among millennial news consumers who rely on over-the- top television. Now we’ll be reaching Americans with cable and satellite service who are looking for a fresh approach to news coverage,” said Scripps CEO Adam Symson in a statement.
Scripps national vice president of national media Laura Tomlin added, “Cable and satellite companies are seeking programming like Newsy to grow their subscriber base with younger viewers — a demographic that mainstream cable news outlets have struggled to capture.”
Indeed, Newsy is expanding in an industry that is largely dominated by the three channels of CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News. Even HLN, a sister network of CNN, has seen its relevance fade as a result of focus changes (including an attempt to be the home of social media on television news) and low ratings. However Newsy is betting that it can differentiate itself from the big three with its focus on millennials. The network is already available to stream and it has an active, but not terribly popular, YouTube presence. Al Jazeera America which launched with the financial backing of the Qatari royal government and news resources of the global Al Jazeera Media Network struggled mightily in the ratings and eventually folded after three years.
Newsy already has some programming but a Scripps spokesperson says the network will be launching new series and live programming as the network transitions to Newsy. Furthermore, the spokesperson revealed that the channel will not be rated when it launches “but is working with several cutting-edge technology partners to offer a real-time look at viewership data.”