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HomeSportsFubo sues Disney, Fox, Warner over planned joint sports streaming service

Fubo sues Disney, Fox, Warner over planned joint sports streaming service

Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce celebrates a first down against the San Francisco 49ers during the fourth quarter of Super Bowl LVIII on Feb. 11. Sports streaming platform Fubo on Tuesday said it is suing Disney, Warner Bros. and Fox Corp. over alleged anti-trust law violation. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo
Feb. 20 (UPI) — Live sports streaming platform Fubo said Tuesday it is suing Disney, Fox Corp. and Warner Bros. Discovery over its planned joint sports streaming platform, alleging the three companies engaged in “anti-competitive practices.” For nine years, Fubo has offered a package of live sports streaming channels, which it boasts as less expensive compared to traditional cable. Advertisement
Media outlets reported Fubo’s, lawsuit, which alleged the three companies “engaged in a long-running pattern of stymying Fubo’s sports-first streaming service by engaging in anti-competitive practices,” and that this joint streaming venture is the latest effort “to eliminate competition in the sports-first streaming market and capture this market for themselves.”
Disney, Warner Discovery and Fox Sports earlier this month announced plans to offer NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL and college sports broadcasts, as well as golf, tennis and NASCAR under a standalone app.
Each of the three companies would own one-third of the yet-unnamed streaming service and license their sports content on a nonexclusive basis.
Bob Iger, CEO of The Walt Disney Company, which owns ESPN, had said the new streaming service would be “a major win for sports fans and an important step forward for the media business.”
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Fubo, however, said the move violates antitrust laws and that it had incurred “billions of dollars” in damages.
The company alleged Disney, Fox and Warner together engaged in tactics to prevent Fubo from competing fairly by forcing it to carry dozens of non-sports channels that “Fubo’s customers do not want as a condition of licensing the Defendants’ sports channels.”
Fubo also alleged it was charged content licensing rates 50% higher than the companies charged other distributors.
“Each of these companies has consistently engaged in anticompetitive practices that aim to monopolize the market, stifle any form of competition, create higher pricing for subscribers and cheat consumers from deserved choice,” David Gandler, co-founder and CEO of Fubo, told media outlets.
Fubo said it is seeking “substantial” monetary damages but did not specify an amount.

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