Due to massive TV rights deals signed with the NFL, NBA and Major League Baseball, media conglomerates Fox and Disney are each looking at long-term sports licensing commitments approaching or exceeding $50 billion.
This is according to a new report in The Information, which lays out some rather stunning commitments, which seemed to be made on the assumption that current pay-TV penetration levels will not drop significantly from their current perch of around 85 percent in the U.S. over the next decade.
Fox, for example, has seen its sports commitments rise from just $21 billion in 2011 to $53 billion for fiscal 2014, as it not only locked up NFL football and the World Series for its broadcast network, but is also now building national sports network Fox Sport 1.
Disney's commitments have grown from $33 billion to $44 billion over the same span. However, as The Information notes, that $44 billion figure—derived from fiscal-year-end reporting on Sept. 27—did not take into account ESPN's new NBA deal, signed in October. The new figure hovers at around $58 billion.
For both conglomerates, the majority of these commitments are due more than five years from now.
- read this report in The Information
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