Fox CEO: ‘We’re Ready to Go’ With a Direct-to-Consumer Offering Surrounding News and Sports

Fox Corp. may have largely turned its back on the subscription streaming video-on-demand market, but it hasn’t turned a cold shoulder to direct-to-consumer digital media distribution.

The company currently operates several digital platforms including the free ad-supported Tubi entertainment streaming platform, along with ad-supported Fox Weather, subscription-based Fox Nation and Fox News International.

Lachlan Murdoch

With pay-TV operators continuing to hemorrhage video subscribers, the media company is eyeing distributing its legacy Fox News and Fox Sports programming brands via over-the-top channels, according to CEO Lachlan Murdoch.

“They will be part of any scaled [digital] platform [going forward] regardless of what technology is used to deliver that content and that platform,” Murdoch said on the May 9 fiscal call. “We see DTC in the future. It will come eventually. As we’ve said before, ‘we’re ready to go,’ we have the technology in place to go DTC when we deem that necessary or prudent.”

At the same time, the executive reiterated that Fox continues to drive “industry leading” affiliate pricing across the multichannel video programing distribution ecosystem.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

Affiliate fee and advertising revenue in the quarter topped $1.85 billion and $1.87 billion, respectively, up from $1.79 billion and $1.3 billion in the previous-year period.

“Our pricing is not theoretical, it has been set regarding a third of our programming in this fiscal year,” Murdoch said. “We’re very pleased with where we sit and where we’ve established a market price for our brands.”

NFL G.O.A.T. Tom Brady Retires Again as Hollywood, Media Careers Beckon

Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback and NFL legend Tom Brady in a social media post Feb. 1 officially announced his second retirement from the game after 23 seasons. The announcement comes one year to the day Brady first announced he was stepping away from the game — only to reverse that decision 40 days later.

Brady, the 199th pick in the 2000 NFL draft, would go on to win six Super Bowls with the New England Patriots and one with the Buccaneers. The 45-year-old ends his career as the greatest of all-time (GOAT) leader in NFL passing yards (89,214) and touchdown passes (649).

Brady is transitioning from the gridiron to Hollywood and the broadcast booth. Paramount Pictures Feb. 3 is set to release 80 For Brady, a sports-themed dramedy co-starring Lily Tomlin, Jane Fonda, Rita Moreno and Sally Field as a group octogenarians who have made it their life-long mission to go to the Super Bowl and meet Brady — who stars as himself and co-produced the movie through his 199 Productions company.

Brady has previously appeared on “Saturday Night Live,” “The Simpsons” and “Family Guy” (2005), a season six episode of “Entourage,” and Universal Pictures’ 2015 R-rated comedy Ted 2.

Brady is also set to begin a 10-year, $375 million contract with Fox Sports as a signature NFL game analyst.

Fox Corp., Vizio Expand Streaming Content Distribution Partnership

Fox Corporation and Vizio Nov. 3 announced a multiyear expansion of their distribution partnership that includes access to the Fox Sports app on Vizio smart-TVs, and the Fox Weather channel added to the consumer electronics manufacturer’s ad supported WatchFree+ streaming platform.

Vizio’s home screen Nov. 12-13 will feature a “sports blitz” section highlighting live college football and NFL games via Fox Sports. The app is the home for streaming live and on-demand sports from Fox, FS1, FS2, and Fox Deportes. Every Live Fox Sports game and studio show is available to TV subscribers, making NFL, MLB, NASCAR, college football, college basketball, FIFA World Cup, UEFA European Championships, CONCACAF Soccer, MLS, WWE, USFL, and Liga MX, as well as on-demand highlights of top moments from TV shows and sports leagues.

Additionally, viewers now have access to even more FIFA World Cup content, with the launch of Tubi’s exclusive FIFA World Cup Linear FAST channel.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

The Fox Weather streaming platform’s access on WatchFree+ joins LiveNow from Fox and Fox Soul. Operated by Fox News Media, Fox Weather is a 24/7 free ad-supported television service (FAST) that builds upon Fox News Channel’s expansive news gathering units and Fox Television Stations’ resources. The channel offers users an innovative approach to weather forecasting with a combined 120 meteorologists and a comprehensive suite of weather products in addition to live programming.

“Fox and Vizio have been working together for several years to bring audiences the best in entertainment. Our expanded agreement means Vizio users can enjoy a wide range of sports, live events, news and lifestyle programming for years to come,” Katherine Pond, Group VP of Platform Content & Partnerships at Vizio, said in a statement.

Additionally, the Tubi app available on SmartCast now features more than 48,000 movies and TV shows, including a growing library of Tubi originals.

Vizio Smart TVs also include support for Apple AirPlay 2 and Chromecast built-in, allowing viewers to stream, control, and share content from their phone, tablet, or laptop directly onto the big screen.

Tom Brady to Become Lead Fox Sports NFL Analyst Upon Retirement

Ten-time Super Bowl QB Tom Brady (with seven wins) is set to join Fox Sports as the network’s lead NFL analyst when his playing career with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers ends.

Fox Corp. CEO Lachlan Murdoch made the surprise announcement during the media company’s May 10 fiscal call. Brady reportedly agreed to a 10-year deal worth $375 million.

Murdoch said Brady would call the network’s “biggest NFL games” with Kevin Burkhart and serve as a Fox Sports ambassador with ad clients and promotional initiatives.

“We are delighted that Tom has committed to joining the Fox team, and we wish him all the best during this upcoming season,” Murdoch said. “I am sure everyone joins me in warmly welcoming Tom Brady on board.”

Brady, who retired at the end of the 2021 season, reversed his decision shortly thereafter and rejoined the Buccaneers for the upcoming 2022 season.

FuboTV Sub-Licensing European Soccer via Fox Sports

Global live soccer continues to be a magnet for U.S. streaming platforms.

Online TV platform FuboTV Jan. 24 became the latest domestic streamer to announce it has secured exclusive U.S. rights through a six-year sublicense with Fox Sports to stream select matches from Union of European Football Associations (UEFA). The distribution deal kicks off with the UEFA Nations League in June. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Through its deal with Fox, FuboTV will be the exclusive home to a package of selected UEFA National Team Football matches through 2028. Fubo will have exclusive rights to stream select matches featuring the top European national teams, including Italy, France, England, Germany, Spain, Portugal and the Netherlands. The company’s coverage includes select matches within the following events in all languages (except Spanish and Portuguese):

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

  • UEFA Nations League
  • European Qualifiers to UEFA Euro 2024 and 2028
  • European Qualifiers to FIFA World Cup 2026
  • Friendly Matches played by European nations controlled by UEFA
  • UEFA Euro2024 (5 Matches)
  • UEFA Euro2028 (5 Matches)


“Soccer has always been integral to FuboTV’s DNA,” David Gandler, co-founder/CEO of the online service said in a statement. “Today’s announcement marks an important milestone for the company as we work to differentiate our sports-first content portfolio and reinvent interactive sports and entertainment television.”

FuboTV’s UEFA coverage will stream on Fubo Sports Network, which is available as part of Fubo’s base plan of 100+ sports, news and entertainment channels. Select UEFA matches and all re-broadcasts will stream on Fubo Sports Network and its distribution partners, including Hisense Smart TVs, LG Channels, Sports on Tubi, Plex, Samsung TV Plus, The Roku Channel, Vizio Channels and Comcast-owned ad-supported platform Xumo.

Tubi Sponsors Fox NFL Postgame Show ‘The OT’

Fox Entertainment continues to aggressively market its ad-supported FAST platform Tubi, incorporating the platform as presenting sponsor of the network’s Sept. 12 postgame “The OT” segment following the “NFL on Fox” first-week televised game between the Denver Broncos and the New York Giants.

Fox Corp., unlike other media companies, has eschewed the subscription VOD business in favor of Tubi, which it acquired for $440 million in 2019. Seeking the platform as a digital extension of its ad-supported TV network, Fox is hoping to generate $350 million in incremental revenue in 2021 — $1 billion annually in the next few years.

To do that, Tubi needs viewer eyeballs. Millions of them.

At the end of the fiscal year (June 30), Tubi surpassed 3 billion hours streamed, up more than 50% over the prior year. During the recent quarter, total view time surpassed 900 million hours, up more than 40% over the prior-year quarter.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

Driving the increased viewership: Primetime TV content, including the first digital access to Fox reality competition series “The Masked Singer” and “Lego Masters,” among others.

“I cannot emphasize enough the importance of total view time as the critical metric for ad supported streaming,” CEO Lachlan Murdoch said on the company’s latest fiscal call. “It is the best measure of burgeoning engagement on Tubi and correlates directly to the monetization of the platform.”

Last month, Tubi and Fox Sports announced the launch of “Sports on Tubi” in the U.S., affording viewers access to 10 live streaming channels for different sports, including professional football, baseball, soccer, collegiate sports from the ACC and Pac-12 Conferences, as well as nearly 700 hours of VOD content.

ESPN Leads 41st Sports Emmy Awards; Netflix Grabs Doc Win

Disney-owned ESPN edged out Fox Sports, CBS Sports and HBO to lead the The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences 41st Sports Emmy Awards. The live-streamed ceremony honored nominees in more than 35 categories. Surprise winners included Netflix, which won a documentary award (“Last Chance U”) despite eschewing live sports programming.

“The global pandemic has created unparalleled challenges in bringing a ‘live’ awards show program to the sports community,” Adam Sharp, CEO, NATAS, said in a statement. “With two hosts, seven presenters, and more than 135 acceptors coming from either a studio or their homes across the country, the sheer size and demand for new and exciting ways to recognize the great talents creating sports television has been an enormous enterprise that the National Academy has happily embraced.”

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

The ceremony was streamed live on NATAS’s dedicated viewing platform powered by Vimeo, available on the Web at and via The Emmys apps for iOS, tvOS, Android, FireTV, and Roku (full list at

Categories included Outstanding Live Sports Special, Live Sports Series and Playoff Coverage, three Documentary categories, Outstanding Play-by-Play Announcer and Studio Host, among others. This year’s competition marked the debut of a new category for Outstanding Esports Coverage.

Follow us on Instagram

The full list of honorees follows and is also available at

The 41st Annual Sports Emmy Award by Network

Network Winners
ESPN                                  7
MLB Network 3
FS1 2
NBC   2
NBCSN                              2
NFL Network 2
CBS Sports Network 1
ESPNews 1
FOX Deportes 1
FS2 1
Golf Channel 1
Netflix 1
Red Bull TV 1
tbs 1
truTV 1
UFC Fight Pass 1
YouTube 1

The 41st Annual Sports Emmy Award by Network Group

Network Group Winners
FOX Sports Media Group (FOX, FS1, FS2, FOX Deportes) 7
CBS Sports (CBS, CBS Sports Network) 5
HBO Sports 5
Turner Sports (tbs, TNT, truTV) 4
MLB Network 3
NBC Sports Group  (NBC, NBCSN, Golf Channel) 3
NFL Network 2
Netflix   1
Red Bull TV   1
UFC   1
YouTube   1

The 41st Annual Sports Emmy Award by Multiple Winners

 Program Winners Network
Super Bowl LIV 4 FOX
24/7 3 HBO
E: 60 2 ESPN
NFL 100 2 NFL Network
SC Featured 2 ESPN
2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup 2 FOX
The Masters 3 CBS


Brazil Approves Disney/20th Century Fox Merger

Brazil regulators have approved The Walt Disney Co.’s $71.3 billion acquisition of 20th Century Fox Film and related businesses — paving the way for consummation of the Hollywood mega-merger first announced in December 2017.

The slow-moving antitrust hurdle represented one of the last challenges to Disney’s merger with Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox entertainment division.

Brazilian authorities sought and achieved Disney’s divesture of Fox Sports channel in the South American country. Disney also owns ESPN Brazil channel. Fox Sports owns rights to key soccer competitions in the region.

Subscribe HERE to our FREE daily newsletter!

A similar situation exists in the U.S. where the Justice Department ruled Disney has to sell off its stake in 22 regional Fox Sports channels since it owns ESPN.

European Union officials ordered Disney sell its European — not U.S. — stake in A&E Networks.

“Currently, there is only one big-screen rival capable of competing with these channels,” Brazil’s Administrative Council for Economic Defense said in a statement as reported by the Los Angeles Times. The agency said separating Fox Sports from Disney “aims to eliminate competitive concerns in the pay-TV sports channel market.”

Fox Innovation Lab Releases 5G Study on U.S. Open Trial

The Fox Innovation Lab has released a 5G study with Fox Sports, Intel, AT&T and Ericsson, highlighting the project at this year’s U.S. Open Golf Championship.

5G is the next-generation mobile technology.

The study, “5G at the U.S. Open: Live Streaming Without the Handicap,” outlines the results of the companies’ trial in June to put 5G to the test, streaming 4K video to Fox Sports national broadcast. The study reveals how the companies were able to deliver higher amounts of data with no delay and remove the cost of running fiber around the Shinnecock Hills golf course and reduce personnel and equipment needed on site. The study also showed the process could improve backhaul transmission costs to the distribution center. 

“While this was a fairly simple trial, it indicated that 5G is a technology that could drive the savings of millions of dollars over the course of a production year in terms of fiber deployment and backhaul transmission, after it is fully deployed over multiple types of sports broadcasts,” stated Mike Davies, FOX Sports SVP of technical and field operations, in the report. 

“From the Lab to on-location, we worked with our partners to integrate the capabilities of 5G into the workflow of a large-scale sports production, resulting in performance learnings that inform future, more complex use cases,” stated Danny Kaye, EVP of 20th Century Fox and managing director of the Fox Innovation Lab.

Fox Partners with Snapchat, Twitter for World Cup Soccer

Seeking to further embed social media with live sports, Fox Sports is working with Twitter and Snapchat for this summer’s 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.

Twitter will showcase every goal scored from all 64 matches seconds after they occur. Snapchat will produce “Our Stories” video segments featuring behind-the-scenes video from the quadrennial competition taking place June 14 – July 15.

Fos, which paid a reported $400 million for the U.S. broadcast/streaming rights to the World Cup, will produce a daily live show with host Rachel Bonnetta (@rachelbonnetta), streaming on Twitter from Moscow’s Red Square.

Featured guests include Fox Sports’ 2018 FIFA World Cup on-air hots Rob Stone (@RobStoneONFOX), Landon Donovan (@landondonovan), Kate Abdo (@kate_abdo), Alexi Lalas (@AlexiLalas), and Fernando Fiore (@FernandoFiore), among others.

“We’ll immerse fans in the ‘beautiful game’ even further through expert analysis and fun, creative content from Moscow,” Alexis Ginas, SVP of cross-platform solutions, Fox Sports, said in a statement.

Snapchat, which is creating original content for A+E Networks, Discovery, ESPN, NBC Universal and Turner, seeks to replicate exclusive content with “Publisher Story” showcasing the daily “drama” from the international event.

“What makes the tournament so exciting for us is that we are going to be able to deliver our community a perspective of the global game that brings them not only into the roaring stadiums in Russia, but also to those celebrating in cities around the world,” said Ben Schwerin, VP of partnerships at Snap Inc.

While soccer remains the world’s most popular sport, World Cup interest among casual viewers in the United States remains to be seen considering Team USA is not participating for the first time since 1986.