January 7, 2021
Comscore, the media metrics company headed by former Rentrak CEO Bill Livek, is reportedly finalizing a fiscal restructuring agreement that includes funding from cable TV operator Charter Spectrum, the corporate owner of QVC and Home Shopping Network (HSN), and private-equity firm Cerberus Capital Management.
Charter is a customer of Comscore’s media tracking software, a market that is rapidly evolving as a result of consumer migration toward over-the-top video consumption, including SVOD and ad-supported VOD. Major rival includes Nielsen Holdings, which in September began tracking Netflix, Disney+, Hulu and Amazon Prime Video content ratings over connected televisions.
When finalized, Comscore would be in a better position financially to deal with more than $200 million in debt repayment due this year, according to The Wall Street Journal, which cited sources familiar with the situation. Charter, in return, would garner enhanced media metrics across its growing distribution channels including pay-TV and broadband.
Comscore in 2019 named Bill Livak CEO after the firm acquired the assets of Rentrak Corp., the Portland-based former DVD revenue-sharing distributor and upstart media metrics company, for $768 million. At Rentrak, Livak spearheaded the firm’s move away from packaged media to next-generation products aimed at measuring theatrical and digital movies and TV everywhere content.