Now that Belgian-Brazilian conglomerate InBev owns Anheuser-Busch, some new policies in the way broadcasters (and vendors) are paid for ads have been unveiled. The new policy was delivered via a 2/5 letter, describing a “net 120 day” basis. So stations will have to wait some four months to be paid for spots. The letter also says if stations don’t go along with the new policy, the company may have to consider an alternative supplier. Also, if they don’t hear back by 2/28, you’ve agreed to the new policy.
Alan Gray, New Generation Broadcasting, Las Vegas, has a great suggestion from the radio side: “A-B’s blatent demand that all providers wait up to 4 months to get paid or ‘we may consider an alternative supplier’ gives the radio mega-groups a chance to lead. Radio needs leadership and this is a great opportunity for Clear Channel, CBS, Cumulus, Citadel, etc to show us they are capable of doing so. To stand up to this advertiser in this economic environment would be big and give some hope that all is not lost. If all we hear is "silence" and they quietly go along with this absurd demand, it will show they are not capable of such leadership. I’ll be watching with much interest!”
RBR/TVBR observation: RBR/TVBR editors are all planning to enjoy some of A-B’s fine products, and we will gladly pay for them–in June. But seriously, folks A-B knows you all will jump through hoops right about now for business and most have already agreed to the deal. This might be a time for an industry association or two to step up and fight this—because if A-B can get away with it, so will countless others.