When Comcast CEO Brian Roberts surveys his company’s future growth prospects, interactive/enhanced advertising is near the top of his list. "Right after we rollout commercial phone starting next year, this is the strategic imperative of the company," he told a Sanford Bernstein investor conference Wed. It’s an area the industry has been talking about for years, with CableLabs and cable ops, including Time Warner Cable, stepping up work on a common standard for ITV advertising so that advertisers can make big, national footprint buys. "It would be really great if cable operators could work together to present to advertisers one platform, one set of metrics, one Nielsen pipe of data—whether its Nielsen’s or whomever’s," Roberts said. "If we can make interactive television happen, nobody will be able to aggregate more eyeballs to do it than the cable industry and Comcast." Another area that Roberts talked up was the Web, saying he hopes Comcast’s soon-to-launch Fancast.com will become the Internet destination for video. "We’re trying to build a site, as are 100 others, for not a lot of money, to be that place," he said, telling the crowd that YouTube isn’t really that destination for "pretty much any of us" (i.e., it’s more for the kids). Fancast, slated to launch this summer, is being billed as a "national entertainment site where people can search and discover TV and movie content." While Roberts believes Web 2.0 will be more video centric, he’s not too concerned that increasingly fast broadband speeds will prompt consumers to bypass their cable subscriptions for Internet video. "I don’t believe [Web 2.0 is] live television centric. I think it’s recorded television and broadcast and snippets and short form, and just a different kind of consumption," he said. He declined to comment on whether Comcast might be interested in buying Yahoo!, which it recently did a deal with that has Yahoo! selling video and display ads on its Comcast.net portal. "There’s always going to be chatter about a big company," Roberts said. "’Are you feeling complete?’ Maybe that’s the question to ask. Everything else has to be so good, so opportunistic, so better than what you think your existing business can provide for itself. And I think we feel complete. When we bought AT&T Broadband, it’s hard to imagine anything that we have to do after that."

The Daily


Trian Buys Comcast Shares

Hedge fund Trian Fund Management has taken an $870mln stake in Comcast . Trian has now accumulated approximately 20mln shares in the MVPD, according to a WSJ report. “We have recently begun what we believe

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