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‘Infinite Challenge’ ad sales fall due to hiatus

Feb 13,2017
The seven-week break of “Infinite Challenge” is estimated to cost MBC around 2 billion won ($1.75 million) in lost sales, industry experts predicted Saturday.

The mission-oriented reality TV show, first aired in 2005, is one of the most viewed non-drama programs in South Korea and a major ad seller for the broadcaster.’

The Saturday evening program began a seven-week hiatus on Jan. 28 to “take time for reorganization.” In its place will be shown a three-episode comedy special and reruns of past episodes.

“Infinite Challenge,” which features a regular cast of celebrities including Yoo Jae-suk and Park Myeong-soo, has attracted 40 commercials per episode, worth a total of 540 million won in sales. Accordingly, during the seven weeks it would have raked in sales worth 3.8 billion won.

For weekend afternoon reruns of major weekday TV series, ad rates are normally slashed to more than half from the original broadcast.

The state-run Korea Broadcasting Advertising Corporation said ad prices for the upcoming “Infinite Challenge” reruns haven’t been decided yet. But if ratings fall, it said, a drop in rate is likely unavoidable.

Unless the specials and reruns perform better, and without an increase in ad buyers, the network may face up to 2 billion won in lost sales.

“For the past two weeks, the number of commercials for ‘Infinite Challenge’ has halved. Things could get worse or remain this way until ‘Infinite Challenge’ resumes,” an advertisement industry expert forecasted.