Fox CEO: Live Sports Not Coming to Tubi

Fox CEO: Live Sports Not Coming to Tubi

Fox Corp.’s ad-supported free streaming platform Tubi may have just inked a distribution deal with sports-themed online streaming service DAZN for the first North American launch of sports-themed free ad-supported streaming television (FAST) channels featuring women’s professional soccer.

But that doesn’t mean Tubi is pursuing live sports content, according to Fox CEO Lachlan Murdoch.

Speaking on the company’s May 8 fiscal call, Murdoch was asked if the company’s pending live-sports joint venture app with Disney and Warner Bros. Discovery would eventually make it way to the Tubi platform. The executive dismissed the idea, saying Fox Sports content would remain distributed through existing pay-TV channels and subscription streaming services.

“We don’t see an opportunity at this stage or we haven’t contemplated an opportunity at this stage to bundle the sports app with Tubi,” Murdoch said. “I think it makes potentially more sense to bundle sports with other SVOD services, which you’ll likely see as we go forward.”

That’s noteworthy considering Disney CEO Bob Iger, speaking on his company’s May 7 fiscal call, said that select ESPN programming would be coming to the Disney+ SVOD service later this year.

Fox Sports, which will broadcast the Super Bowl in 2025, saw quarterly advertising revenue drop 36% without the Super Bowl and two fewer NFL games (which went to Prime Video and Peacock streaming).

Murdoch contends that despite not having a branded SVOD service outside Fox Nation, the company is well-equipped to participate in the SVOD market with its live sports rights.

“I don’t think we are strategically disadvantaged with not having a subscription video-on-demand service, because we found in the past, we can partner with others,” he said. “The [sports] leagues to tend to partner with others, we can take the rights where we can broadcast to the most amount of Americans possible, and [the leagues] can allocate rights to SVOD as needed. But they’re never going to be able to live entirely without a broadcast network [such as Fox Sports] and the broadcast distribution.”

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