ABC, which is losing Oprah Winfrey, is gaining Katie Couric. The New York Times and the Wall Street Journal both reported today (Monday) that a deal between the network and Couric is expected to be announced as early as today. [UPDATE ABC has confirmed The Deal. In a message to staff, ABC News President Ben Sherwood said "I've known Katie for 14 years, and even with all of her success, I'm confident that her best days, biggest scoops and most powerful journalism lie directly ahead."] The show would be offered for syndication and would debut in The Fall of next year. In the meantime, Couric would also contribute features and specials for ABC News. The Journal said that Couric is being guaranteed $20 million per year -- $5 million more than her current compensation at CBS -- and could earn more than that based on the performance of the show. The Times said that with a syndicated show, "Ms. Couric's own take each year could be tens of millions of dollars." Couric told the Times that she had previously resisted hosting a daytime talk show while Winfrey was still on the air. "I never wanted to compete with her," she said, "because no one could." Couric confirmed that former NBC President Jeff Zucker, who produced the Today show when she co-hosted it, will be a co-partner in the new syndicated show.

06/06/2011