Cablefax 100
The Greatest Hits of 2012

The Magazine's ultimate cable industry power list.

Cable used to be such an easy business. Few competitors, reliable cashflow and straightforward content negotiations. Obviously those days ended years ago as satellite competitors pushed everyone into digital, and then cable pushed back with a broadband product that raised the bar on everyone, especially the foot-dragging telcos that have since stepped up in a big way. And because of all that bandwidth, Silicon Valley wants a piece of the action with OTT plays that increasingly threaten cable’s core businesses.

It’s an insanely competitive world now, and that’s why the executives who drive overall strategy (i.e., the ones at the very top) are more important than ever. They need to understand everything from the technology to the economy to consumer desires to financial realities to negotiating tactics and beyond—all just to keep their businesses afloat, much less thriving. The bar has never been higher for execs who end up on the Cablefax 100 power list. They must be smarter than ever, quicker than ever and, frankly, more laser-beam focused on the customer than ever before. It’s not as if the old-school leaders who built this industry weren’t incredibly talented capitalists who risked it all to grow the business. They were. But the modern cable executive has it even tougher because technology and consumer behavior are changing so much faster than equipment cycles or annual budget projections. Nimble is the new black. And it’s never been more important to stay in fashion.

Our Cablefax 100 leaders are kind of like Olympic athletes. Go back decades, and you’ll find examples of distance runners, high jumpers, swimmers and others who seemingly set records that could never be broken. Consider this: For hundreds of years, the “experts? said the human body was incapable of breaking the 4-minute mile. Then, on May 6, 1954, Roger Bannister did just that. People wrote it off as a one- time anomaly. Until another person broke it. Then another. These days, running a 4-minute mile is routine. How is it that no one was ever able to do it before 1954? Because people finally realized it was possible.

It started in the mind, and the body followed. Cable execs must now monitor and maneuver around more obstacles and challenges than ever. Years ago, people might have looked around and called it an impossible task. Not anymore. The bar is raised. And it will be higher in the future. Get ready to run...

Michael Grebb Editor

Above It All

The few, the proud... the Masters of the Universe. Every year, we elevate a few above the 100 and beyond the reach of mortal moguls. These media titans are truly... "Above It All."

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