Is $340M a Lot of Money? For Pluto TV?

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Is $340M a lot of money? For Pluto TV?

Well, in some ways, yes.

Bob Bakish let loose a few eyebrow-raisers on CNBC this morning.

First off, let’s talk markets. He’s calling this AVOD & quoting $8B in TAM – but that’s mostly YouTube & Facebook. So is Pluto the YouTube killer?

“12M monthlies” – is that a website metric? He said it rose by 3M in the last quarter – but, wait – why? Would love to know if it was a content event.

But in the era of 1 second views, ad fraud, and hyperscale, I’m not sure what that number means.

The ad-based TV biz is predicated on the volume-hours of video watching. It’s average minute viewing times number of minutes viewed. Most still watch from 2 – 5 hours of old school TV a day. Younger kids watch less, elders watch more.

He talked up the young age of the audience, which I’d agree is a huge positive – except with one caveat:

Kids today, from what I can tell, do not like ads. We all know about ad overload and it’s had an impact.

So when he talked about Pluto TV as having addressable ad inventory, lightly sold ad inventory, well:

Let’s see. If they do something highly creative with the ad inventory, that could indeed be a factor that makes this a super interesting bet.

Also I will say this:

I love the brand potential of Pluto TV. And Viacom is of course the right partner to pour a few billion onto it & make it wowmazing. I hope they do!

Another positive? The partnerships underway. Samsung, Vizio, & “not yet announced MVPD.”

And really, THAT’S why $340M is a drop in the bucket for Viacom. Think about it like an acquihire. From that perspective, given the streaming business at stake, this is probably as good a bet as any.

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Expert in video tech, TV biz, prototyping, product strategy, marketing & sales.

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