Oprah Winfrey with Christina Norman, C.E.O. of OWN, and David Zaslav, president and C.E.O of Discovery Communications

*The New York Times says Discovery Communications expects Oprah Winfrey’s cable channel to achieve profitability in its first year:

Discovery and Ms. Winfrey flipped the switch on OWN, short for the Oprah Winfrey Network, on New Year’s Day. The new channel enjoyed heavy sampling among viewers over the weekend, though executives have cautioned that they expect a bumpy ratings ride in the beginning.

Brad Singer, the chief financial officer for Discovery, said at an investors’ conference Tuesday that OWN should be “Ebitda positive” in 2011 “because of ad acceptance and good performance.”

Ebitda is shorthand for earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, and is a standard measure of operating profitability.

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