Disney, Charter Do Distribution Deal

The new multi-year agreement covers ABC, ESPN, WABC New York, KABC Los Angeles, WLS Chicago, KGO San Francisco, KTRK Houston, WTVD Raleigh-Durham, N.C., and KFSN Fresno, Calif.,  a host of other services available to Charter customers both in and out of the home.

Charter Communications and The Walt Disney Co. today announced a comprehensive, long-term distribution agreement to deliver Disney’s lineup of sports, news and entertainment content to Charter TV customers across televisions, computers, smartphones, tablets, gaming consoles and internet-enabled televisions. Disney and Charter said the agreement “supports the companies’ mutual goal to deliver the best video content to customers across multiple platforms. Launch of content across these new distribution platforms is planned to begin in the first half of 2013.”

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 Full Court, ESPN3, The Longhorn Network, and retransmission consent for WABC New York, KABC Los Angeles, WLS Chicago, KGO San Francisco, KTRK Houston, WTVD Raleigh-Durham, N.C., and KFSN Fresno, Calif., as well as more than 10 high-definition networks.

As part of the new deal, The Longhorn Network will launch in Texas, Louisiana and Virginia systems by football season next year. Charter and Disney will also introduce several new services, including the full suite of authenticated WATCH products, ESPN Goal Line, ESPN Buzzer Beater, 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.

Charter 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 Charter 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.

“This agreement enables us to offer our customers additional value, choice and convenience,” said Allan Singer, Charter’s SVP, programming. “More and more content is being enjoyed on tablets and other Internet-connected devices, and today’s viewers are sharing their TV experiences in new ways.  Our agreement with Disney enables more robust ways to enjoy and socialize TV.”

Added David Preschlack, EVP, affiliate sales and marketing, Disney & ESPN Networks Group, “Our agreement with Charter represents the sixth top-10 distributor renewal encompassing Disney’s full suite of products and services. With this deal, Charter’s video customers will derive even greater benefit from the value of their multichannel subscription model, including 24/7 live access to our content via the WATCH Disney services and WatchESPN across more platforms than ever before, as well as other new and advanced services.”


The extensive and expanded rights package for video-on-demand content to Charter TV customers includes: ABC On Demand, ABC Family On Demand, Disney Channel On Demand, Disney Junior On Demand and Disney XD On Demand. A variety of Disney Channel Original Movies will also be available as will expanded On Demand content from ESPN, including content from ESPN Deportes and ESPN’s award-winning original content from ESPN Films.

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