A long article today in Multichannel News that would be interesting for folks more interested in the reach of cable networks, as opposed to the viewership and ratings we usually feature.

More than two dozen cable networks will hit a major — some might say meaningless — milestone before the end of the year: 100 million subscribers.

Research firm SNL Kagan projects that by year-end 2009, 20 national networks, including TBS, The Weather Channel, Discovery and Nickelodeon, each will have amassed more than 100 million cable, satellite and telco TV subscribers, down as far as VH1. Comedy Central, a sibling within Viacom’s MTV Networks, will be just 300,000 short of 100 million when 2009 wraps up.

In all, 24 networks (down to Cox Communications-owned Travel Channel) will have more than 99 million subscribers each at years end.

THE ROAD TO 100 MILLION
Milestones for the fully distributed basic-cable networks:

Network Launch Date Year to Pass 50 Mil. Subs Est. YE Subs 2009Y
SOURCE: SNL Kagan
TBS 1976 *1989 101.9
The Weather Channel 1982 1991 101.7
Discovery Channel 1985 1990 101.5
Nickelodeon/Nick at Nite 1979 1990 101.4
USA 1980 *1989 101.2
TNT 1988 1990 101.1
CNN/HLN 1980 *1989 101.0
Food Network 1993 2000 101.0
Lifetime 1984 1990 100.9
TLC 1980 1996 100.9
HGTV 1994 1999 100.9
Spike TV 1983 1990 100.8
ESPN/ESPN HD 1979 *1989 100.7
Cartoon Network 1992 1998 100.6
Disney Channel 1983 1999 100.5
MTV 1981 1990 100.4
CNBC 1989 1993 100.3
History 1995 1998 100.3
A&E Network 1984 1991 100.1
VH1 1985 1995 100.0
Comedy Central 1989 1998 99.7
ESPN2 1993 1997 99.4
ABC Family Channel 1977 1990 99.1
Travel Channel 1987 2001 99.1
C-SPAN 1979 1994 98.6
Animal Planet 1996 1999 98.4
Fox News Channel 1996 2000 98.4
TV Land 1996 2000 98.4
TruTV 1991 2000 98.3
FX 1994 2000 98.2
Sci Fi Channel (Syfy) 1992 1998 98.0
E! 1987 1998 97.3
AMC 1984 1994 96.0
MSNBC 1996 1999 95.9
Bravo 1980 2000 93.0
Fox Sports Net 1996 1997 91.4
CMT 1983 2001 91.4
BET 1980 1997 90.0

NETS ON THE VERGE
Services with more than 98 million subscribers:

SOURCE: Nielsen Media Research data, May 2009
TBS 99,228,000
CNN/HLN 99,088,000
Weather 99,029,000
Discovery 98,796,000
Nick 98,574,000
USA 98,429,000
TNT 98,268,000
ESPN 98,140,000
Food 98,087,000
A&E 98,005,000
TLC 98,003,000

lots more to read at  Multichannel News.

Posted by:TV By The Numbers

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