SubscriberWise Congratulates MCTV for Cablefax’s Independent Operator of the Year Award

A festive and proud occasion for employees of ACA, NCTC, Cablefax, and MCTV (photo: Cablefax)

Nick Provost, network engineer for MCTV and SubscriberWise project manager engaged at Independent Show

MCTV honored by Cablefax during the National Cable Television Cooperative (NCTC) and the American Cable Association (ACA) 2015 Independent Show in Boston.

Bob Gessner and his family are the epitome of cable’s entrepreneurial and public service spirit.
— NCTA head Michael Powell
MANHATTAN, NEW YORK, U.S.A., July 26, 2015 / -- SubscriberWise, the nation’s largest issuing consumer reporting agency for the communications industry, announced today its congratulations to MCTV ( for being named 2015 Independent Operator of the Year by Cablefax. The honor was proudly accepted by MCTV president Bob Gessner and 10 of his employees who attended the annual conference which was held in Boston. The award ceremony included a formal evening with fine dining, entertainment, and conversation with hundreds of industry professionals and their families from around the nation and the world.

Article Source: Cablefax Magazine; Author: Seth Arenstein:

Sometimes you just don’t notice what’s in front of you.

That’s what one of our judges said about the selection of this year’s Independent Operator of the Year, MCTV, which arguably has been in the forefront of independent cable operators for more than 30 years.

As ACA EVP & Chief of Staff Rob Shema says, “I can list 100 projects that MCTV has led and then shared its knowledge with the industry.” Indeed, at least two projects, Watch TV Everywhere and SubscriberWise, are based in MCTV facilities.

More than that, MCTV chief Bob Gessner is the poster child for industry service, having chaired ACA, NCTC and the Ohio Telecommunications Association. “Bob has been a true leader as an industry representative on the local, state and national level,” says ACA chief Matt Polka. NCTA head Michael Powell adds, “Bob Gessner and his family are the epitome of cable’s entrepreneurial and public service spirit.”

In our defense, it’s not like Cablefax hasn’t recognized MCTV previously. We’ve honored Gessner several times, including naming him Strategic Thinker of the Year. SubscriberWise has been feted and years ago we lauded Gessner for an innovative soiree he threw to celebrate going all digital—amid drinks and food, he hired a crane to hoist an old TV set high, then let it crash to the ground.

Another reason MCTV and Gessner slip under the radar: While one of the easiest executives to get on the phone and a pleasure to speak with, Gessner’s among the most unassuming business chiefs around. Weeks ago we thought we spied him riding the D.C. subway system. Would a cable CEO with 40K customers eschew a private car or cab to use public transport? We checked; it was Gessner.

So we try in a phone interview to get Gessner to gloat. Watch TV Everywhere allows some 200 indie operators to offer nearly 100 networks. Gessner pours cold water on it. We just do the authentication, he says, comparing MCTV’s role to a bouncer at a nightclub entrance. “As long as your name is on the list, we let you in the door.” It’s your cable operator who does the hard part, he insists. True, yet it was Gessner’s insistence—“harassment,” he says—that MCTV could host HBO GO, which led to Watch TV Everywhere.

We try to play up SubscriberWise, which MCTV credit chief David Howe created in 2006 to help assess credit worthiness of new cable subs. A standalone product now, it saves small and mid-size operators millions in delinquent customers and lost equipment. Gessner is justly proud, but sloughs off any, er… credit, saying, “It’s a separate entity from MCTV; Dave Howe owns it.” He’s right, but as Howe responds: “MCTV provides office space, a training center, cutting-edge network operations, engineers and access to cable data… SubscriberWise would not exist without MCTV.”

What Gessner happily talks up are MCTV’s 160 employees—“they deserve the lion’s share of the credit”— and its proactive maintenance. MCTV’s all-digital system allows it to use cable modems to provide telemetry about its plant. Diving deeply into the data allows MCTV to spot plant issues and problems in customers’ homes before customers even know something’s wrong. MCTV initiates one-third of its customer visits. “People are flabbergasted when we call to say we need to fix something. Most customers’ response is, ‘Nothing’s wrong.’”

The passing of Ralph Roberts reminds us that his son Brian worked in various Comcast businesses before leading the company. One of Gessner’s children, Catherine, is doing something similar. “We had an agreement… she needed to get a masters and work somewhere else before working here,” he says. She’ll be well versed in cable before dad, 61, “seriously cuts back.” Catherine is the third generation of Gessners in cable, Bob says, thanking his parents, whom he calls “visionaries and gamblers” for “trusting me” with the business. It was a good bet.

About SubscriberWise

SubscriberWise® launched as the first U.S. issuing consumer reporting agency exclusively for the cable industry in 2006. In 2009, SubscriberWise and TransUnion announced a joint marketing agreement for the benefit of America's independent cable operators. Today SubscriberWise is a risk management preferred-solutions provider for the National Cable Television Cooperative.

SubscriberWise contributions to the communications industry are today quantified in the billions of dollars annually.

David Howe is founder, president, and majority share-holder of SubscriberWise. He is also a consultant and credit manager for MCTV. At MCTV, Howe manages the bad debt and equipment losses on annual sales in excess of $60 million. During his 19-year career at MCTV, Howe has reviewed more than 50,000 credit submissions. His interest in credit began in 1986 while a 17-year-old student in high school.

Howe is recognized as one of the most productive and engaged child identity theft experts of the 21st century. Today Howe is using the resources of SubscriberWise to help protect children from identity theft and exploitation across the nation:

Howe is the only known individual – living or deceased – to have obtained simultaneous perfect FICO 850 scores across every national credit bureau. Howe has also obtained simultaneous perfect Vantage scores at Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion.

Howe has obtained FICO Professional Certification and is also the first and only citizen of the world to describe and report the details of the perfect FICO and Vantage scores to U.S. reporters.

Howe produced and published two videos on the subject of perfect credit: FICO 850 Credit Report Facts and FICO Scores: The Facts. The first general-purpose FICO scores were debuted a quarter century ago.

SubscriberWise is a U.S.A. federally registered trademark of the SubscriberWise Limited Liability Co.

David Howe
330-880-4848 x137
email us here