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Oprah launches OWN network

posted 30 Dec 2010, 14:12 by Mpelembe   [ updated 30 Dec 2010, 14:15 ]
Oprah Winfrey's OWN network launches New Year's Day. Advertisers are betting her loyal fans will translate into lots of viewers.
USA-OPRAHS OWN NETWORK - Oprah is getting her OWN network filled with big name celebrities, familiar faces made famous by Oprah, and shows to help viewers live their best lives.

Most of all - the network will be Oprah: her vision - her celebrity - her high appeal to advertisers.

Horizon Media's Brad Adgate:


"They love her. I mean she is about as mainstream as you can get. I think the advertising community is behind her 100%."

On January 1st the Discovery Health Network transforms into OWN - the Oprah Winfrey Network - a joint venture between Discovery Health and Oprah's production company, Harpo.

People in 85 million homes will be able to tune in, and while they may have to initially search for it among the higher cable channels, advertisers hope Oprah's celebrity and loyal fans will raise the network's profile.

Advertisers already on board include General Motors and Procter and Gamble. Media watchers say Oprah will lure enough viewers to nearly triple the subscriber fees Discovery Health got from cable operators. But in the end, Oprah must deliver.


"She has pretty much hit a home run in everything she has done and but no - launching your own cable network under your own network, there's a lot to lose. There's a lot of upside, but on the flip side you know if things don't pan out, uh you know it could kind of tarnish her image a little bit."

This network has been years in the making, yet it'll be missing one key element when it launches: Oprah herself. She won't be on her OWN network until she finishes her syndicated show later in the year.

Bobbi Rebell, Reuters