Katie Couric’s Next Stop: Syndication?

By Alex Weprin Comment

Couric guests on ABC daytime talker "The View"

Broadcasting & Cable‘s syndication ace Paige Albiniak reports that multiple syndicators have been pitching “CBS Evening News” anchor Katie Couric on her own daytime program, in the event she decides to leave CBS News.

Couric’s current deal with CBS ends next year.

While the syndication market is not as strong as it once was, it is still a very attractive option for news anchors and personalities looking to expand their personal brands–and make some money in the process.

CNN anchor Anderson Cooper has a syndicated talk show, “Anderson” set to bow next Fall, while HLN’s Nancy Grace has found success with “Swift Justice.” Other efforts, like Fox News Channel contributor Mike Huckabee’s “The Huckabee Show” did not fare as well.

Still, there is a method to the syndie madness, as Albiniak reports:

If Couric and her team can negotiate an attractive package at CBS News, that is probably where she would prefer to stay, say sources. But if syndicators can devise an even more appealing deal – that would likely include Couric creating her own production company and multi-platform offerings — she could perhaps be convinced to make the switch.

If Couric wanted to make a move to daytime – which would not pay her as much as her current CBS News contract, but could pay as much as $5 million a year plus a piece of her show, estimate sources – 2012 would be a good time to do it.

By then, the impact of Oprah’s departure will be clearer and stations will have more cash in a year that includes the Summer Olympics and a presidential election. Comcast also will have completed its acquisition of NBC, which could mean that the NBC-owned stations become more aggressive about acquiring daytime shows.