05 August 2009

WDYTYA and Ancestry

Ancestry.com makes considerable reference to the TV program "Who Do You Think You Are?" in their draft IPO prospectus released on Monday.

Ancestry has a record of success with the program. "Our subscriber additions were 569,851 in 2006, principally driven by the airing of “Who Do You Think You Are?” in the United Kingdom ..."

They indicate they have already made commitments to programs in the US series . "... we have purchased product integration in the television show “Who Do You Think You Are?” in the United States, but we may only at a later date, or never, experience an increase in revenue or brand awareness as a result of such expenditures."

Ancestry indicate they expect the US program to air in early 2010. "If public interest in family history generally or in our websites specifically were to increase as a result of a successful marketing and advertising promotion, media focus (for example, as a result of the potential introduction of the television show “Who Do You Think You Are?” in the United States in early 2010) or other reasons, we could experience a spike in new subscriptions. "

However, the US version of the show has already been postponed once, and Ancestry seems far from certain that he will in fact be broadcast. "We do not control the release of this television show and cannot be sure if or when it will be released or if it will have any effect on our revenues or results of operations."

The revenue figures in the document show that Ancestry makes more money per capita in the UK than in the US. Based on 2008 data, if the company had the same penetration in the US as in the UK revenues would increase by $30 million.

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