Disney, Fox and Warner Bros. Discovery Team on Sports Streaming Service – Hollywood Reporter

In a blockbuster agreement that Disney CEO Bob Iger calls “a significant step forward for the media business,” Walt Disney Co., Fox Corp. and Warner Bros. Discovery will create a new company that combines streaming sports rights.

The untitled streaming platform will offer live linear channels like ESPN, ABC, Fox, TNT, and TBS, and games and other sports rights from all three media giants on a non-exclusive basis (meaning they are still in the process of launching their offerings. Will be able to). The service will be available directly to consumers, but also as a bundle with WBD’s Max, Disney’s ESPN+, and Hulu. Pricing is still TBD, but it’s expected to launch in the fall, in time for the NFL season.

Each of the three companies will own one-third of the new venture, which will have its own brand and independent management team. The deal is dependent on the parties coming to a final agreement, although in theory they have an agreement.

Notably, NBCUniversal and Paramount are not part of the new venture. nbc has sunday night football NFL rights, college rights, as well as the Olympics, while Paramount’s CBS Sports has Sunday afternoon NFL games, live soccer, and other college rights.

A source says the new venture, though a big step, is not expected to impact ESPN’s plans to offer a direct-to-consumer “flagship” ESPN streaming service, but to complement it. In some ways, the new venture is something like a “thin bundle” of streaming networks, focusing exclusively on channels featuring live sports rather than entertainment.

The deal will create a streaming sports giant with rights to the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, college football and NCAA March Madness…

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