Even as more people cut ties with cable, Fox Corporation Chief Financial Officer Steve Tomsic is betting on cable bundles over streaming services as the best way to get premium sports coverage. The company plans to continue offering traditional cable bundles to increase customer value.
“Right here, right now, the most effective way for a consumer to receive sports and news is still the bundle, and the most effective way to monetize our content remains the bundles,” Tomsic said at Wednesday’s Bank of America Media, Communications, and Entertainment Conference, according to Stream TV Insider.
Live sports is one of the key pieces of content guaranteed to draw an audience, and it’s steadily moving to streaming, meeting audiences where they’re at. YouTubeTV offers NFL’s Sunday Ticket package, while Apple TV has made headway by offering Major League Soccer, hyped up by the addition of Lionel Messi. Amazon Prime offers Thursday Night Football as a streaming option. With streaming services often less expensive than traditional TV packages, adding sports further tempts people to leave cable behind.
Fox plans to hold out on moving to paid streaming services for now. However, Fox-owned Tubi offers free live sports, such as basketball and football coverage to U.S. households,
Tomsic said Fox will not follow suit, at least not anytime soon, as the network continues to prioritize traditional pay TV partners. At the conference, he said Fox sports content is “coveted” by cable and satellite providers and consumers.
“It’s incumbent upon us to get a higher share of wallet from those distributors in order to justify the fact that we remain in that bundle,” said Tomsic.
In August, Fox said it has no plans to launch a streaming service for Fox News and Fox Sports. Fox’s Chief Executive Lachlan Murdoch said cable “drives value of Fox Sports and will for a long time to come.” According to its most recent earnings report, the network stands firm as revenue streams bring in $3.03 billion.
The position stands in contrast to Disney, which has been open about its desire to create a streaming version of its ESPN network, one of the reasons why it ended up in a dispute with Charter.