CBS and Time Warner announced plans Tues. to create a jointly owned network, known as the CW, out of the remnants of the two struggling networks, which have reportedly lost well over $2 billion since they launched 11 years ago. The CW, which will become the fifth major broadcast network, will be targeted at viewers ages 18 to 34 years old.
Tribune Broadcasting, which owns 16 WB affiliate stations in major markets and a minority stake in the network itself, signed a 10-year affiliation agreement to carry the CW. So did the 12 UPN affiliate stations owned by CBS. The combination of the 28 stations will give the new network instant coverage of 48 percent of U.S. TV households when it launches in September. The CW aims to sign affiliation deals with other regional broadcasters, boosting its nationwide coverage to at least 95 percent.
Current UPN President Dawn Ostroff will become president of entertainment at the new network. John Maatta, now COO of the WB, will hold the same post at the CW.