Disney, Fox and Warner Bros. To Launch a Joint Venture Sports Streaming Service

Published: February 7, 2024

Reports indicate that Disney is going to join forces with Warner Bros. and Fox to create a new sports streaming service. Each entity will own one third of the service however each company having their own brand, and management team. The service will be available direct to consumer alone or as part of a bundle with Disney’s ESPN+ or Warner Bros. Discovery’s Max services. 

Under this deal subscribers will have access to live streaming events usually seen on linear channels like ABC, Fox, ESPN, TNT and TBS.

According to THR this is going to create a “streaming sports behemoth.”

The deal would create a streaming sports behemoth, with rights to the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, college football and NCAA March Madness basketball, the FIFA World Cup, three of the four grand slam tennis events, the UFC, Formula 1 and NASCAR.

This is also a big deal for Fox because this is the first time Fox live sports offerings will be available streaming outside of CableTV or a multichannel video programming distributor (MVPD.)

By joining forces it will give the new service a larger footprint in the sports space as well as stronger purchasing and negotiation power with advertisers and rights to air sporting events.

Each CEO had a statement to offer on the deal:

Disney CEO Bob Iger said, “The launch of this new streaming sports service is a significant moment for Disney and ESPN, a major win for sports fans, and an important step forward for the media business. This means the full suite of ESPN channels will be available to consumers alongside the sports programming of other industry leaders as part of a differentiated sports-centric service. I’m grateful to Jimmy Pitaro and the team at ESPN, who are at the forefront of innovating on behalf of consumers to create new offerings with more choice and greater value.

Fox CEO Lachlan Murdoch offered this statement, “We’re pumped to bring the Fox Sports portfolio to this new and exciting platform. We believe the service will provide passionate fans outside of the traditional bundle an array of amazing sports content all in one place.

Warner Bros. Discover CEO David Zaslav gave his statements saying, “At WBD, our ambition is always to connect our leading content and brands with as many viewers as possible, and this exciting joint venture and the unparalleled combination of marquee sports rights and access to the greatest sporting events in the world allows us to do just that. This new sports service exemplifies our ability as an industry to drive innovation and provide consumers with more choice, enjoyment and value and we’re thrilled to deliver it to sports fans.

So far a name and pricing has not been announced.  But the new service is expected to be released fall 2024. 

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Source: The Hollywood Reporter

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