CBS announces Q3 results, plans for Showtime premium OTT service
Michelle Clancy
| 07 November 2014
CBS is making a second foray into over-the-top (OTT) with the launch in 2015 of Showtime, a premium cable standalone streaming OTT service.

Speaking on CBS' third quarter 2014 results conference call, CEO Leslie Moonves noted that: "We could say fairly definitively, sometime in 2015, there will be some service from Showtime."

CBS has already embraced OTT with the just-announced All Access service, which will offer its broadcast network content online for a subscription fee.

CBS is just the latest incumbent media provider to announce plans to go after the ten million broadband-only households in the US. The news comes on the heels of Richard Plepler, chairman and CEO at HBO, announced that it will debut a streaming service of its own in 2015.

"That is a large and growing opportunity that should no longer be left untapped. It is time to remove all barriers to those who want HBO," he said. "So, in 2015, we will launch a stand-alone, over-the-top, HBO service in the United States. We will work with our current partners. And, we will explore models with new partners. All in, there are 80 million homes that do not have HBO and we will use all means at our disposal to go after them."

CBS surpassed Wall Street projections with its Q3 results, buoyed by political advertising and the spin-off of its billboard unit. It reported a profit of $1.64 billion, or $3.03 a share, up from $494 million, or $0.80, in the year-earlier period.

Revenue came in 2% higher, at $3.4 billion.

Advertising interest for Thursday Night Football and the glut of political ads related to the US mid-term election contributed significantly to the bottom line.

"We are still the best game in town," Moonves told analysts. "NFL football has clearly been a great addition to our prime time line-up."