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A&E Posts Best Year in Network History
A&E is wrapping up the best year in the network's history among all key demographics, ranking number 5 in adults 25-54 and 6 in adults 18-49. This achievement will mark the fifth straight year of growth for the twenty-four year-old network.
Among all ad-supported cable networks in 2008, A&E ranks number 5 in adults 25-54 (up from number 7 in 2007) and number 6 in adults 18-49 (up from number 8 in 2007), finishing ahead of other top ten networks including SCI FI, Lifetime, Discovery and Spike in both demos. With just two weeks left in the year, A&E is averaging 690,000 adults 25-54 impressions in prime time, an 8% increase from 2007. Among adults 18-49, A&E has also climbed 8% over 2007, to 665,000 viewers.
"2008 was marked by the strong performance of A&E's unparalleled slate of real life programming, the introduction of first class original scripted drama and a comprehensive repositioning of the network around Real Life. Drama," said Bob DeBitetto, President and General Manager of A&E and BIO. "It has truly been a remarkable year for A&E, with strong growth throughout the year against a very competitive landscape. This performance gives us great momentum as we look to '09 and the imminent launch of our second scripted series, 'The Beast' starring Patrick Swayze, in January."
In a few short years, A&E has risen 10 spots in adults 25-54 (from #15 to #5) and an amazing 15 notches in adults 18-49 (from #21 to #6), making A&E the fastest climber among the major cable networks. Among the target demo of adults 25-54, A&E has finished among cable's top ten networks for 28 consecutive months.
In 2008, eight original series have averaged near or above one million viewers in the adults 25-54 and 18-49 demographics and a record nine series have performed at least 25% stronger than A&E's prime average in adults 25-54, up from five in 2007.
2008 marked A&E's reintroduction of first-class original scripted drama beginning with the two-night epic event "The Andromeda Strain," produced by Ridley and Tony Scott, which averaged 2.7 million viewers adults 25-54 and 2.4 million adults 18-49, ranking as the #1 cable mini-series on the year and garnering 7 Emmy® nominations.
The first scripted drama in six years, "The Cleaner" staring Benjamin Bratt premiered in July. In its first season, on a weekly three telecast cume basis "The Cleaner" averaged 4.2 million total viewers, 2.4 million adults 25-54 and 2.2 million adults 18-49 in primetime. "The Cleaner" has become A&E's number one original drama in network history among adults 18-49 and 25-54, roughly doubling the audience of the previous two series in those demos.
In addition to receiving its first Emmy® nomination for Outstanding Reality Series in 2008, the Real-Life series "Intervention" grew its audience by 56% over last year, averaged 1.4 million adults 25-54. The sixth season premiere on December 15 became the series' best season opener in series history among all key demos. The episode averaged 1.6 million adults 25-54, 1.7 million adults 18-49 and 2.2 million total viewers.
Ratings Source: Nielsen Media Research (Live + Same Day), 2008 through 12/14/08