For some time now, Cablevision subscribers have been missing out on many of the internet-based and other offerings from The Worldwide Leader in Sports. Today, however, folks will be happy to know that The Walt Disney Company (ESPN's parent outfit) and Cablevision have reached a deal which will bring access to a variety of new content on different platforms, including WatchESPN, ESPN3, ESPN 3D as well as on demand channels from ABC and Disney's extensive repertoire. Mum's the word on how much cash was involved in the deal, but we do know it's a multi-year agreement and that Walt & Co. feel rather content about it, with a company's spokesperson saying, "With our robust and ever-growing multi-platform content offerings, we're pleased to be able to expand our relationship with Cablevision."
The Walt Disney Company and Cablevision Announce Comprehensive Distribution Agreement
New Multi-Year Deal Provides Sports, News and Entertainment to Cablevision Customers In and Out of the Home
Cablevision to add Full Suite of Authenticated WATCH Services, ESPN3 and ESPN 3D, among others
BETHPAGE, NY and NEW YORK, NY –– OCTOBER 4, 2012 –– Cablevision (NYSE: CVC) and The Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS) today announced a comprehensive distribution agreement to deliver Disney's robust lineup of top quality sports, news and entertainment content to Cablevision TV customers across television, internet, tablets and handheld devices. The new agreement enhances the multichannel business model and supports the companies' mutual goal to deliver the best video content to customers across multiple platforms.
As part of the new multi-year agreement, Cablevision will launch several new services, including the full suite of authenticated WATCH products, ESPN3 and ESPN 3D, as well as the upcoming ABC News/Univision Joint Venture, a 24/7 news, information and lifestyle multi-platform network for English-dominant and bilingual Hispanics, the youngest and fastest-growing demographic in the U.S. In total, approximately 70 services are covered by the broad scope of this agreement including: ABC, ABC Family, Disney Channel, Disney Junior, Disney XD, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPN Deportes, ESPNEWS, ESPN Classic, ESPN Goal Line, ESPN Buzzer Beater, ESPN 3D, ESPN GamePlan, ESPN FullCourt, ESPN3 and Longhorn Network; retransmission consent for WABC-TV and WPVI-TV, as well as more than 10 high-definition networks.
Cablevision customers will receive broad access to existing authenticated products like WATCH Disney Channel, WATCH Disney XD and WATCH Disney Junior, the to-be-launched WATCH ABC and WATCH ABC Family services and WatchESPN (ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN3, ESPNU, ESPN Goal Line and ESPN Buzzer Beater). These products will give Cablevision customers more opportunities to access live and video on demand content, both in-home and out-of-home, on their computers, smartphones, tablets and gaming consoles.
Cablevision will also provide its TV customers with broad access to expanded On Demand content through Disney's comprehensive TV+ initiative.
"This significant agreement ensures that our customers will continue to have access to dozens of ABC, Disney and ESPN networks for years to come and, for the first time, they will be able to enjoy Disney and ESPN programming outside the home," said James L. Dolan, Cablevision's president and CEO. "It includes the launch of new services, like ESPN3, and expanded availability of high-quality On Demand content, which is a key element of our video strategy and value proposition to customers."
"With our robust and ever-growing multi-platform content offerings, we're pleased to be able to expand our relationship with Cablevision," said Anne Sweeney, co-chair of Disney Media Networks and president of Disney/ABC Television Group. "We look forward to working together to deliver our viewers and their customers better access to our broad portfolio of high-quality programming."
Added John Skipper, President, ESPN, Inc., "Working with Cablevision, we're able to strengthen the value of the multichannel subscription by delivering 24/7 live access to our content, which is at the core of our collective commitment to sports fans."
The extensive and expanded rights package for Cablevision TV customers includes rights across multiple platforms for:
ABC On Demand, ABC's fast-forward-disabled On Demand service, which currently features a selection of top-rated primetime entertainment programming, including episodes of such popular current ABC shows as "Castle," "Grey's Anatomy," "Once Upon A Time," "Private Practice" and "Revenge." Full current seasons will be made available on a number of shows. Additionally, Cablevision customers will have access to a variety of ABC News programming as well as some local ABC owned-station content.
ABC Family On Demand, which features a variety of top-rated full episodes, refreshed monthly, from such popular millennial favorites as "The Secret Life of the American Teenager," "Switched at Birth," Baby Daddy" and "Melissa & Joey." Full current seasons will be made available on a number of shows. ABC Family original movies like "12 Dates of Christmas" will also be available.
Disney-branded On Demand offerings, including Disney Channel On Demand, Disney Junior On Demand, and Disney XD On Demand. Refreshed each month, the Disney Channel On Demand offering will include episodes from such series as "Handy Manny," "Mickey Mouse Clubhouse," and "Jake and the Never Land Pirates" for preschoolers, as well as variety of episodes from "A.N.T. Farm," "Good Luck Charlie," "Jessie," and other popular series for older kids. Select episodes featured on Disney Channel On Demand will be available in innovative new offerings, such as playlists and monthly programming blocks, in addition to a number of episodes available in multiple languages. A variety of Disney Channel Original Movies will also be available. Disney XD On Demand features a selection of episodes from such series as the Emmy Award-winning animated hit "Phineas and Ferb," "Pair of Kings" and "Kickin' It."
Expanded on demand content from ESPN, including content from ESPN Deportes and ESPN's award-winning original content from ESPN Films.
The subscription On Demand service "Disney Family Movies," which features a selection of classic and contemporary feature films and animated shorts from The Walt Disney Studios.
Cablevision Systems Corporation is one of the nation's leading media and telecommunications companies. In addition to delivering its Optimum branded cable, Internet, and voice offerings throughout the New York area, the company owns and operates cable systems serving homes in four Western states. Cablevision's local media properties include News 12 Networks, MSG Varsity and Newsday Media Group. Cablevision also owns and operates Clearview Cinemas. Additional information about Cablevision is available on the Web at www.cablevision.com.