MIAMI — In this Peak TV moment, the dearth of new first-run product for sale at NATPE speaks volumes about the fragmented state of the content marketplace.
Yes, it’s the best of times for producers who have no shortage of outlets hunting for distinctive original content. But it’s not the best of times for finding a way to make real money from new shows at a time when the cost of every aspect of production is soaring simply because there are so many players chasing talent and deals.
The first-run syndication business that was the traditional underpinning of the annual National Association of Television Program Executives conference has been in a long slump, beset by declining ratings and softness in local advertising. The two new strips that did hit the market reflected the needs of stations for plug-and-play shows that are highly cost efficient (read: no big license fees)