On the Call: News Corp CEO Robert Thomson

On the Call: News Corp CEO Thomson talks about mobile ad revenue

Associated Press

Not so long ago, Facebook faced doubts about whether ad revenue from mobile devices was keeping pace with its users' rapid adoption of the format.

Now, that same concern is facing media company News Corp., which reported that mobile usage of The Wall Street Journal app rose 59 percent in September, but that U.S. ad revenue for the flagship newspaper was flat for the quarter that ended in September.

CEO Robert Thomson addressed the question following the release of the Rupert Murdoch-controlled company's fiscal first-quarter earnings on Monday. He said the company's launch of a new advertising network should help it benefit from growth on any platform.

QUESTION: You talked about a pretty big mobile growth number at Wall Street Journal of 50 to 60 percent, yet advertising still is flat with the Journal. So can you talk about, is there some kind of growth in mobile that's being partially offset by traditional or is it still too early to have mobile impact?

RESPONSE: (Thomson) What we are truly seeing is mass migration and mass media. When you talk about a 59 percent increase in audience for a premium product like The Wall Street Journal, you're talking about both a significant trend and a significant opportunity.

It's just a little early for us to quantify what that means in terms of long-term advertising trends. But I think what you can see we've done is create the programmatic ad exchange, which enables us to sell across properties but also to get our maximum yield for premium properties like the Journal on any platform including mobile.

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