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Why do millions of people all around the globe shop QVC? Because we offer a highly engaging, highly differentiated shopping experience. We strive to surprise and delight our customers every day, with curated collections of products that are relevant to their lives. We connect with customers via authentic stories, interesting personalities, and award-winning customer service. We invite customers to tell their stories and share their feedback. And we do it live, across multiple networks and platforms. It’s how we deliver the joy of discovery through the power of relationships.
QVC, an acronym for "Quality Value Convenience," is an American free-to-air television network and flagship shopping channel specializing in televised home shopping owned by the Qurate Retail Group. Founded in 1986 by Joseph Segel in West Chester, Pennsylvania, United States, QVC broadcasts to more than 350 million households in seven countries, including channels in the UK, Germany, Japan, Italy, and a joint venture in China with China National Radio called CNR Mall.
QVC was founded on June 13, 1986, by Joseph Segel. One of the first brands to sign a two-year deal with QVC for its products was Sears. The corporation later set a new record for first full-year fiscal sales for a newly public company of $112 million.
Initially broadcast live from 730 p.m. until midnight ET each weekday and 24 hours a day each weekend, the channel extended its live programming to 24/7/364 in January 1987. In 1989, QVC acquired its top competitor, the Cable Value Network CVN, founded by Irwin L. Jacobs. The $380 million deal contributed to a loss of $17 million during the next fiscal quarter and then led to difficulties in the couple of years that followed.
On February 2, 1995, Comcast purchased a majority shareholder stake in QVC, Inc., taking control of the corporation. That year, QVC kicked off the "Quest for America's Best 50 in 50 Tour," a 50-week nationwide product search. Q2, a separate channel for more upscale shoppers, was founded in 1994 but abandoned in 1996. QVC.com was started in 1996 as iQVC.
In 1998, two former hosts filed a class-action lawsuit against QVC, claiming that they were discriminated against by the shopping channel based on their race. The lawsuit stated that QVC refused to allow non-white hosts any permanent daytime/primetime spots, which relegated them to the overnight hours, otherwise known as the "graveyard shift." Because of this, the non-white hosts were paid considerably less than the white hosts.
In July 2003, Comcast sold its majority share to Liberty Media. On September 23, 2007, QVC U.S. rebranded itself, changing its logo on-air and online. An advertising campaign accompanied the rebranding with the tagline "iQdoU?" "I shop QVC, do you?" that had preceded the rebrand with billboards in major U.S. cities. The iQdoU? the campaign also included a "teaser" website.
QVC was the first shopping network to offer a native high-definition simulcast channel in May 2009. The 43 cuts for its standard definition feed in this 169 presentation is made to the right of the screen rather than on both sides of the 43 frame, allowing the network to place its graphics fully to the left and lower portions of the screen to maximize camera presentation space.
On September 30, 2010, at 11 p.m., QVC began broadcasting in Italy, both on satellite and through digital terrestrial television. In 2012, QVC partnered with China National Radio to oversee its home shopping network and associated internet e-commerce site. Its initial reach was reported to be 35 million households.
In 2013, QVC partnered with Ion Media Networks to bring its programming to broadcast television through Ion Television. QVC began to be carried as the fifth digital subchannel on most Ion Television owned-and-operated stations beginning on August 5, 2013; due to technical limitations caused by the number of subchannels Ion requires its stations to carry, QVC is carried in a squeezed full-screen 43 format and is transmitted in standard definition. The channel is also broadcast on digital subchannels of low-powered television stations in selected areas. The broadcast service is branded as "QVC Over the Air," with an accompanying on-screen bug appearing on the lower right corner of the screen during the network's programming.
In August 2015, QVC acquired the online retailer Zulily for $2.4 billion.
On July 6, 2017, QVC's parent company, Liberty Interactive, announced its intention to purchase the remaining 62% of stock it didn't already own of HSN, the rival home shopping channel. The all-stock deal is valued at $2.1 billion, $40.36 a share. In 2018, Liberty Interactive rebranded itself as Qurate Retail Group, trading under the new NASDAQ tickers QRTEA and QRTEB, with Mike George remaining as President and CEO.
In 2018, Qurate named Leslie Ferraro as President of their QVC and HSN units. Ferraro concluded her 17-year run at The Walt Disney Company, where she most recently served as co-chair of Disney Consumer Products and Interactive Media and president of Disney Consumer Products, and reported to work at the Qurate on September 16. On February 6, 2019, QVC again rebranded itself, the new logo with a square shape intended to resemble a computer or a phone screen, emphasizing its digital and mobile platforms. The lever of the Q, Susan Ripke, QVC’s vice president of brand strategy, says, is supposed to symbolize an open door. On Monday, October 7, 2019, QVC ceased its 24/7 live broadcasting model in favor of airing nineteen hours of life and five hours of repeated programming daily.
On August 22, 2013, QVC launched a timeshift channel called QVC Plus, the first such channel operated by a home shopping network, made available initially on cable provider Bright House Networks and satellite provider DirecTV, which broadcasts the channels programming on a three-hour tape delay. On April 1, 2017, QVC Plus was rebranded as QVC2 as a destination for more live programming, now broadcasting live 12 hours a day, Monday through Friday from noon to midnight ET, and Saturdays and Sundays from 10 are-10 pm ET.
On October 25, 2016, QVC announced the creation of Beauty iQ, a female-oriented television channel based entirely on beauty products. The network was launched on both DirecTV and Dish Network on October 31, 2016. Beauty iQ aired live programming Monday through Friday, 8 pm - Midnight ET. Beauty iQ ceased live programming on March 13, 2019.
On April 1, 2019, Beauty iQ was rebranded as QVC3, airing rebroadcasts of previously recorded QVC and QVC2 programming 24 hours a day.
Beauty iQ returned as the company's first digital-only channel on April 22, 2019, "to better reach its target audience of millennials,” a representative said.