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DirecTV, Disney Reach Multi-Year Distribution Agreement

Two sides renew a deal to provide subscribers with Walt Disney Company content

DirecTV and Walt Disney Company reached a multi-year distribution deal, both sides announced on Tuesday.

Their renewal agreement gives the content provider’s subscribers access to Disney’s sports, news, kids and entertainment content across multiple platforms, including TV, gaming console, and smartphones.

“This new agreement brings DirecTV’s already unmatched content offering and experience to a whole new level. It also allows both companies to evolve together into the future and gives DirecTV customers a wide range of in-home and out-of-home viewing options to enjoy the broad collection of ESPN, Disney and ABC content,” Dan York, Chief Content Officer at DirecTV said in a statement. “It’s an immense and exciting undertaking to work together to shape the future of content consumption and the possibilities are endless.”

“We have a stellar reputation for working in close collaboration with our distribution partners to strengthen the value of the multichannel video subscription. Our new agreement with DirecTV reinforces that approach and brings to a successful conclusion the renewal over the past several years of deals with each of our top ten affiliates,” added David Preschlack, Executive Vice President, Affiliate Sales and Marketing, Disney and ESPN Media Networks. “Not only will DirecTV customers continue to receive all the great content they currently have, but they will now be able to access it on digital platforms through our authenticated WATCH products as well as receive new services as part of their subscription, including Fusion, Longhorn Network, ESPN Goal Line, ESPN Buzzer Beater and ESPN3 also on television.”

The deal will allow DirecTV customers to access live feeds and video-on-demand content from each of ESPN, Disney cable networks and ABC owned and operated stations. Disney’s online Watch services, which include WatchESPN, Watch Disney Channel, Watch Disney XD, Watch Disney Junior, Watch ABC Family and Watch ABC, will also be available to stream on Internet-enabled devices in early 2015.

New services to be introduced as part of the deal include Fusion, Longhorn Network, ESPN Goal Line and ESPN Buzzer Beater. DirecTV customers will also enjoy expanded viewing functionality on select content across Disney/ESPN/ABC channels and gain access to ESPN’s live multi-screen sports network, ESPN3, and SEC Network’s digital platform and SEC Network +, with plans to explore new over-the-top (OTT) offerings in the future.

Renewed channels covered by the multi-year agreement include ABC Family, Disney Channel, Disney Junior, Disney XD, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPN Deportes, ESPNEWS and SEC Network, with ESPN Classic set to be reintroduced as a video-on-demand service. The companies also renewed carriage agreement for ABC’s eight owned local stations, including WABC-TV in New York City, KABC-TV in Los Angeles, WLS-TV in Chicago, WPVI-TV in Philadelphia, KGO-TV in San Francisco, WTVD-TV in Raleigh-Durham, KTRK-TV in Houston, and KFSN in Fresno.

DirecTV customers will be able to access VOD offerings on platforms, smartphones and on PCs, including full episode of shows like ABC’s “Scandal,” ABC Family’s “The Fosters,” Disney Channel’s “Mickey Mouse Clubhouse” and original content from ESPN Films.