Viacom Inc. (NASDAQ: VIAB) announced plans to work directly with mobile phone networks to make deals in trying to gain back younger U.S. viewers who have left expensive cable TV packages. Media companies and mobile networks depend on each other for content and distribution and Viacom already has agreements in deals in other countries. They plan on setting up a division that will have at least 100 workers produce short form shows that are more easily watched on a mobile device.
However, it is possible that these mobile carriers won’t be able to pay for Viacom’s shows but the company isn’t able to make profit on future increases in fees for traditional cable and satellite distributors anyway. As a result, Viacom had lowered fees earlier this month so their networks would feature on all cable bundles offered by Spectrum.
The company has already made two deals in Japan with mobile companies for their Nickelodeon and MTV apps. Since then, mobile usage of MTV hits had surpassed Japan’s MTV TV channel where ad revenue is shared. 20% of Japanese distribution revenues this year reported a increase from about 2% in 2014.