While Fox News celebrated its 20th anniversary last week, little business brother Fox Business Network marks its ninth anniversary Saturday.
FNC and FBN CEO Rupert Murdoch stopped by the FBN senior staff meeting Thursday to mark the occasion. FBN was Murdoch’s big idea in early 2007. After seeing the rapid growth of Fox News, the News Corp. chairman saw an opening to take on business news leader CNBC. And six months later, FBN went on the air. The network has seen some successes, in breaking news and in ratings growth. 2015 was its most-watched year yet.
At its launch party nine years ago this month, Murdoch talked about what he hoped FBN would be: “At Fox Business we cover the scandals and failures that come along from time to time. We’ll be just as tough as anyone in protecting investors. But my hope for Fox Business is that we’ll also find time to celebrate the freedom and sense of optimism that free markets have given Americans.”
This afternoon FBN evp Brian Jones sent a note thanking staffers for their “long hours” and “hard work” of the last 9 years:
On October 15, 2007, a scrappy little network turned on the lights for the first time. Like Fox News, the Fox Business Network was laughed at by critics and derided by the competition. From a paper plan to launch, we had six months. Six months to hire the best team in financial news. Six months to get all of the equipment and prepare the studios. Six months to develop and prepare programming. We took over the space of a departed law firm on the twelfth floor. Squeezed into the space of a large conference room, you had to create while they built around you. Our first live shot was from the parking lot of CNBC. Sending a message.
We produced a live program every night at happy hour from a bar. We told people to cut up their credit cards and how to keep more of the money they have. This was clearly a different kind of business channel. It launched in HD, the first channel to do so, when viewers were just starting to see what that meant.
And what they’ve seen is that our journalists regularly and consistently break news that makes headlines. And a whole lot more saw when FBN hosted a Republican presidential debate that showed our competitor how to do it right. And then we did it again. Producing the highest ratings in the network’s history.
It’s been nine years. Now the Fox Business Network is the fastest growing network in all of cable for more than a year. FBN had its highest rated year in 2015 and is on track to beat that record this year.
Thank you for the focus, all the long hours, and the hard work.
Thank you for the success.