Disney / Fox

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Disney / Fox

Postby Durango Jay » Mon Dec 04, 2017 8:12 am

Disney is negotiating to purchase large parts of Fox. Is the Big East contract about to become an ESPN asset?
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Re: Disney / Fox

Postby LMS » Mon Dec 04, 2017 8:35 am

FS1 (and Fox News) not expected to be part of any deal
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Re: Disney / Fox

Postby Polyfro » Tue Dec 05, 2017 10:08 am

FS1 isn't part of the deal, but the regional sports nets are according to a report from CNBC. So that will affect the Big East in a potentially big way -- the games Fox has been putting on FSN could become Big East Digital Network-only games (read: webcast) if there's no room for them on FS1/FS2. Wouldn't surprise me to see the league push them to sell off more games to CBSSN if that's the case, or to allow schools to make side deals with local TV partners for games Fox doesn't televise on actual TV.

It's fascinating to me that Fox would jettison those regional sports nets to Disney, who will almost assuredly rebrand them under the ESPN name. Why give up the brand equity in all those local markets to your fiercest competitor? And by all accounts, the regional sports nets are highly profitable (and a huge part of the inventory on FSGO, particularly after they made the deal to be able to show MLB games in-market through the app).

I'm sure that's why the price tag is $60B here. Disney's going to fold all the regional sports nets into their new over-the-top ESPN streaming app when it launches next year. Great move for them. Gives me a little bit of heartburn about what Fox thinks the future of FS1/2 looks like, though.
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Re: Disney / Fox

Postby OmahaBen » Tue Dec 05, 2017 2:03 pm

I read it as Fox thinking television rights to sporting events are hitting the point where they're untenable. ESPN is already saddled with long-term billion dollar contracts for major events, and there's no sign of those fees dropping, even as viewership declines.

I'd guess Fox is gambling that those trends will continue.
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