Jack Abernethy’s “Extraordinary Grasp”

By Brian 

When Roger Ailes first met Jack Abernethy, he was “heading out the door at 11 a.m. to play basketball,” Ailes recalls in a B&C profile of the Fox Television Stations CEO. But later that afternoon, Ailes quizzed the CNBC CFO about the business, and he had an “extraordinary grasp” of the details.

“When Ailes left to launch FNC in 1996, Abernethy was the first of the 82 CNBC staffers he hired away,” Jim Benson writes.

“At Fox, Abernethy saw an overlooked opportunity in satellite radio, which he considered a more appealing new medium than the popular dotcoms of the late 1990s. His deals with Sirius and other satellite carriers made the little-known FNC the most listened-to new channel and has resulted in a new Sirius deal for news feed and talk channels.”

> Also: “Abernethy sees little demand among his stations for a national newscast now.”