This family-friendly television business must make its parent proud. Part of entertainment giant Walt Disney, ABC Family Worldwide operates cable channel ABC Family, a network that targets the 18-34-year-old audience segment with programming that is mostly on the safe side. The channel reaches nearly 100 million US households with a mix of original series (Greek, The Secret Life of the American Teenager) and syndicated reruns (Gilmore Girls, That '70s Show). ABC Family also airs both made-for-TV and theatrical movies. The channel operates as part of The Disney/ABC Television Group, which oversees Disney's TV, broadcasting, production, and distribution operations.
Like other cable networks, ABC Family depends on high audience ratings to generate revenue from both advertisers and carriage fees paid by cable system operators. It has succeeded by targeting the young adult demographic with original programming, especially its popular teen dramas The Secret Life of the American Teenager and Lincoln Heights. It faces stiff competition for those viewers from The CW Network (a joint venture between CBS Corporation and Time Warner's Warner Bros. Entertainment) and Viacom's portfolio of networks operated by MTV Networks. Walt Disney recognized ABC Family's success when it promoted its chief Paul Lee to head ABC Entertainment in 2010. The move came after the resignation of Steve McPherson that year. Michael Riley, a former SVP and general manager of Radio Disney, became the new top executive at ABC Family shortly after.
In addition to its flagship cable network, ABC Family Worldwide also owns international kids programming producer Jetix Europe. Walt Disney acquired the 26% of Jetix it didn't already own early in 2009 to boost its TV production and distribution operations. The company later rebrand many of the Jetix channels in Europe under the Disney Channel banner as part of its integration effort.
Formerly known as the Fox Family Channel, ABC Family was acquired by Disney in 2001 for $5.2 billion.
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