Bye bye ROBtv, hello BNN

Today marks the end of Report on Business Television and the start of the multiplatform BNN - the Business News Network.

CTVglobemedia launched the Business News Network (BNN) this morning across multiple platforms. The move signals the re-naming of Report on Business Television (ROBtv), which launched in 1999 as an extension of the Globe and Mail‘s business section. While the newly-named brand’s programming and positioning remains the same as ROBtv, the ROB brand will now be associated only with the Globe and Mail newspaper, magazine and website. The re-named BNN will continue to draw on the Globe‘s journalistic resources and operate a separate newsroom at the CTV news division.

BNN‘s TV schedule – which includes former ROBtv programs such as Market Morning, The Street, Trading Day and After Hours – will soon introduce special coverage, including a look at the impact of global warming on the Canadian economy, the Conrad Black trial, and the BNN C-Suite Survey. Online, will feature full-length on-demand programming from the TV channel. The net’s also making video news available by mobile via a partnership with Bell Mobility.

BNN general manager Jack Fleischmann says the business network has incorporated sponsors such as TD Bank into programming in various ways, whether it be putting client-supplied spokespeople on-air to including sponsors in C-level surveys. Online video and ‘short-form’ mobile content is sponsorable at While he would not release specific traffic numbers for the website or audience numbers for TV programs, Fleischmann did suggest the streaming videos have a loyal audience.

‘In terms of video on-demand, we have what’s probably considered a smaller website in terms of some of the bigger players who are out there,’ says Fleischmann. ‘Nevertheless, we get somewhere between 35,000 and 50,000 video downloads a day. It’s impressive in the sense that people are looking for this content, and we’ve made a point of making the channel advertising friendly for those who want to gain exposure in association with editorial content, which many clients do. We craft opportunities for our clients’ services or products.’