Entertainment

Glenn Beck hopes to cash in on live-streaming Internet channel

Michael Watson Contributor

Monday afternoon, just two months after the Fox News Channel’s “Glenn Beck Program” went off the air, its controversial host will begin streaming online content from his new venture, GBTV.

GBTV offers a two-hour weekday program featuring Beck, which is available as part of a two-tiered paid subscription package. Reuters reports that the site already has more subscribers than the Oprah Winfrey Network.

Beck’s show will be produced by Joel Cheatwood, a former Fox News executive who was previously executive director of program development at CNN.

Subscribers will find a GBTV launch schedule dominated by three hours of Beck’s radio show per day — programming already available in syndication over the air for free. An additional two hours consist of Beck’s new Internet-only television show. GBTV says it will add additional programming from contributors Brian Sack, Raj Nair, S.E. Cupp and Amy Holmes.

Some analysts are skeptical of the venture. Bloomberg reported that up to one-third of GBTV subscribers do not represent new revenue, since they are already subscribers to the premium-content online version of Beck’s radio show.

The program schedule shows no Saturday or Sunday programming for GBTV’s first weekend, and no online schedule is available past its first week of operations.

Others are more optimistic: Forbes has reported a BTIG Research analyst’s projection of GBTV’s revenues at $27 million per year, with the potential for the venture to pay as much as $135 million per year.

Beck’s previous contract with Fox News paid $2.5 million per year.

The company Beck owns that manages his full media portfolio, Mercury Radio Arts, made $40 million last year, a source told Bloomberg.