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ESPN, Fox, and Warner Bros. Discovery have announced plans to launch a sports streaming platform in the fall, offering content from at least 15 networks and all major professional sports leagues. This joint venture aims to provide fans with a comprehensive sports viewing experience in one app, addressing the rising costs associated with subscribing to multiple services.
The collaboration among these three companies is likened to the success achieved by networks when Hulu was introduced in 2008. Kevin Krim, president and CEO of EDO, sees parallels between the original Hulu concept and this new initiative, emphasizing the potential for success in live sports streaming.
Each company will hold a one-third ownership stake in the joint venture, with details such as the service’s name and pricing to be revealed later. The platform will offer a wide range of sports content, including games from major professional leagues, college sports, golf, tennis, and the FIFA World Cup.
Subscribers will have access to content from 15 linear networks, including ESPN, Fox, ABC, and various others. Additionally, the service will allow bundling options with Disney+, Hulu, and/or Max.
The announcement of this partnership coincides with upcoming negotiations between ESPN, Warner Bros. Discovery, and the NBA for the renewal of NBA rights. The competitive landscape, including potential bids from tech giants like Google, Amazon, and Netflix, has prompted strategic collaboration among industry players.
For ESPN, which is gearing up to launch a direct-to-consumer product, this venture represents a significant milestone. Disney CEO Bob Iger emphasized the importance of this launch for Disney and ESPN, highlighting the comprehensive sports-centric service that will be available to consumers.
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