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- The Walt Disney Company announced new ESPN and Disney streaming services on Tuesday, to debut in 2018 and 2019, respectively.
- ESPN streaming, scheduled to begin in 2018, will offer programming for about 10,000 sports games each year.
- The Disney streaming service will debut in 2019 and feature Disney and Pixar movies and television shows.
- Disney is ending their distribution agreement with Netflix as part of this new venture.
- Beginning in 2019, new Disney movies and television shows will not be available on Netflix in the US.
- The announcement comes after Disney spent $1.58 billion to purchase a majority stake of BAMTech, LLC, a software development company that provides “direct-to-consumer streaming technology and marketing services, data analytics, and commerce management.”
- Previously, Disney held a 33% stake in BAMTech. With this new purchase, they gain another 42% stake in the company.
- In Disney’s press release, CEO and Chairman Robert Iger said, “The media landscape is increasingly defined by direct relationships between content creators and consumers, and our control of BAMTech’s full array of innovative technology will give us the power to forge those connections, along with the flexibility to quickly adapt to shifts in the market.”
- BAMTech currently delivers streaming services for the National Hockey League, Major League Baseball, the Professional Golfers’ Association Tour, the World Wrestling Entertainment Network, and Riot Games.
- According to an April report from Tech Crunch, over half of US households with Wi-Fi use streaming services.
- Netflix is the most-used streaming service, found in about 75% of these households.
- Netflix responded to fans on Twitter who were concerned that Netflix’s Marvel shows would be canceled because Marvel is a Disney subsidiary. Netflix said Disney’s new streaming service should not affect these shows.
Not at all, this news does not impact our Marvel series.
— Netflix US (@netflix) August 8, 2017
- Howard Yu wrote in an article for Forbes:
What Netflix has demonstrated is a business model that creates prolonged attention rather than fragmenting it. Its content team draws on its rich trove of customer data when producing shows. Sophisticatedly engaging, these long shows in turn allow Netflix to charge a subscription fee rather than selling advertisements. From this perspective, the battle for consumer attention again proves an age-old formula: Content is king.”
Elizabeth Rhodes contributed to this report.