Venu is ESPN, Fox and Warner Bros. sports streaming service — everything you need to know

 Venu Sports streaming service logo in orange, blue and white.
Venu Sports streaming service logo in orange, blue and white.

Announced in February, the Disney, Fox Corp. and Warner Bros. Discovery live sports streaming bundle finally has a name and a release window.

Venu Sports (pronounced like “venue”) is set to debut in the fall of 2024. Between the NFL in September and the NBA and NHL in October, we assume the joint venture is being targeted to launch around the season start of at least one of those sports.

Variety reports that the launch is dependent on receiving regulatory approval.

“We are excited to officially introduce Venu Sports, a brand that we feel captures the spirit of an all-new streaming home where sports fans outside of the traditional pay TV ecosystem can experience an incredible collection of live sports, all in one place,” said Pete Distad, CEO of Venu Sports in a statement.

Distad, formerly of Apple, was announced as the head of Venu Sports in March. At Apple, he managed the operations and global distribution of Apple TV+.

The trio of media companies own a portfolio of sports networks that are being combined to to carry the sports programming. Below is a list of just the sports channels each company owns:

  • Disney: ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, SECN, ACCN, ESPNEWS, SSPN PLUS and ABC

  • Warner Bros. Discovery: TNT, TBS and TruTV

  • Fox: Fox, FS1, FS2 and BTN.

Due to that range of channels, Venu will have access to a large number of leagues, conferences and specific sporting events. Below is just a partial list of available sports:

  • The big four: NFL, NBA (and the rising WNBA), MLB and NHL

  • PGA Tour, including the Masters

  • Specific major events in cycling and tennis like the Giro D’Italia and Wimbledon.

  • Futbol: FIFA World Cup, MLS, NWSL, La Liga, Bundesliga, CONCACAF

  • UFC

  • Racing: Formula 1, NASCAR

College sports, including major events like the College Football playoffs and the March Madness basketball tournament,

Unfortunately, pricing and a more specific launch date were not announced.

The delay on that may be due to competing factors. Almost immediately after the joint streaming venture was announced, the trio of companies was sued by the “sports-first” streaming service Fubo.

The anti-trust lawsuit just recently got a preliminary injunction hearing set for August 7th. Fubo is going against three companies with powerhouse law firms, so this may be an uphill battle for the company.

Earlier this month, Fubo teamed up with DirectTV and Dish Network to call on Congress to review the state of competition in the pay-TV market. They specifically cited the Disney/Fox Corp/Warner Bros. Discovery partnership as a serious concern.

At the same time, the Justice Department is supposedly planning to review the venture and examine anticompetitive practices. In April, two congressional Democrats expressed concern that Venu is anticompetitive.

The cable-like bundling continues apace, Congress involvement or not, as Comcast just announced a Netflix-Peacock-Apple TV+ streaming bundle that they'd be launching soon.

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