MPT, Bloomberg join forces on new program Show is designed for professionals


Maryland Public Television and Bloomberg Business News L.P. said yesterday that they will team up to produce a daily morning business news program, which both described as a show more likely to appeal to financial professionals than average viewers.

The show will be broadcast nationally on public television stations.

"We're not out to compete with the 'Today' show," said Michael Bloomberg, founder of the business-oriented news and information services company he runs in New York. "It's for professionals, in the same way that AM Weather is for meteorologists and pilots."

Indeed, the new show, scheduled to premiere Jan. 4, is designed as a complement to AM Weather, the highly technical 15-minute early-morning weather show MPT produces and sells to 305 public television stations nationwide.

"We wanted to come up with a 15-minute business companion

show to round out the half-hour," said Frank Traynor, executive in charge of production for Owings Mills-based MPT, which produces Wall $treet Week with Louis Rukeyser. He said MPT approached Mr. Bloomberg, whose news service reaches clients through 30,000 computer terminals and about 50 newspapers; Mr. Bloomberg said the deal took about a month to negotiate.

The show will be produced mostly by Bloomberg personnel working out of the news service's Manhattan quarters. MPT will provide overall supervision of the show's production and content and will be in charge of lining up underwriters to cover production costs.

Mr. Bloomberg said his firm does not expect to be an underwriter. "Underwriting will come from traditional types of companies," he said. "People in finance will underwrite the show."

Mr. Bloomberg said the show is not likely to have a permanent anchor person. Instead, the broadcast will include four daily segments: a news summary, reports on overnight market developments in Europe and Asia, a "Business Talk" segment with interviews of business and political leaders and an educational piece on a technical issue facing securities issuers and investors.

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