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Time Warner Cable to carry LA Dodgers baseball channel

Time Warner Cable to lift LA Dodgers ball channel

Mon Jan 28, 2013 2:02pm EST

(Reuters) – Time Warner Cable Inc pronounced on Monday it will lift a new Los Angeles Dodgers radio channel, outbidding Fox Sports, that hold a rights to uncover Dodgers games for some-more than a decade.

The Dodgers tenure organisation will control a channel, apropos a latest sports authorization to possess all or partial of a possess informal sports network, ensuring ongoing radio increase in further to a remunerative income from wire operators.

The channel, to be called SportsNet LA, is scheduled to start airing Dodgers games during a start of a 2014 round season. The channel will be accessible in southern California and Hawaii.

Terms of a understanding were not disclosed. The Los Angeles Times had reported a understanding could be value between $7 billion to $8 billion over some-more than 20 years. It is a latest in a fibre of costly contracts with media and wire companies for a rights to lift renouned sports events.

The trend showed no pointer of negligence down, analysts said. “Live sports transport will continue to strike a round out of a park. There is now no finish in steer to a ever-escalating cost of high direct live sporting events,” pronounced Magid Associates radio consultant Steve Ridge.

The agreement came dual months after Fox primogenitor News Corp pronounced it was shopping a 49 percent interest in a YES Network, a informal home of New York Yankees round games.

Horizon Media researcher Brad Adgate pronounced a Los Angeles and New York deals reflected a rising value of sports rights for tip names in sports, though did not meant direct is a same in smaller sports markets.

“There’s really most an interest for live sports though in smaller markets like Kansas City or Pittsburgh, a deals will be a small some-more medium and affordable,” Adgate said.

Regional sports channels promote games from teams that ESPN and other inhabitant sports networks do not always carry. The hasten for informal sports rights reflected a broader foe in a inhabitant and general sports markets as well.

On a inhabitant level, Fox and Turner Broadcasting sealed an eight-year promote understanding with Major League Baseball final Oct value adult to $7.4 billion.


Time Warner Cable will be a categorical distributor of a channel and control promotion sales and associate agreements, according to a statement. This means a wire association is available to sell a channel to compensate TV competitors in Los Angeles, such as DirecTV, Dish Network Charter Communications, Verizon Communications Inc and Cox Cable.

Brean Capital researcher Todd Mitchell pronounced Time Warner Cable is spending heavily to constraint area sports teams since Los Angeles, one of a biggest markets, has faced poignant foe from satellite operators such as DirecTV.

DirecTV’s programming arch Dan York pronounced in a matter that DirecTV wants to lift a Dodgers channel “in a future, though when a time comes, we will need to delicately weigh a price/value relationship.”

Cox Cable orator Todd Smith declined to criticism on either Cox would lift a channel. He pronounced that usually 5 percent of Cox’s business watch games on informal sports networks and pronounced these new networks have turn a “major problem” in terms of costs for distributors.

DISH and Charter did not immediately respond to a ask for comment. Verizon declined to criticism on either it was articulate to Time Warner Cable about carrying a channel.

Time Warner Cable has about 2 million subscribers in a area, while a subsequent largest provider, DirecTV has about 1.2 million, according to SNL Kagan research.

The Dodgers organisation and Time Warner Cable pronounced a agreement is theme to certain shutting conditions.

The Dodgers were acquired for $2.15 billion in Mar 2012 by a organisation headed by executives of private investment organisation Guggenheim Partners that enclosed former basketball star Earvin “Magic” Johnson, Hollywood writer Peter Guber and Stan Kasten, a long-time round and basketball executive.

This is a second time that Time Warner Cable kick News Corp’s Fox for L.A. sports rights. In 2011, it outbid Fox, similar on an estimated $3 billion, 20-year understanding to lift Los Angeles Lakers basketball games on a newly minted Time Warner Cable Sports channel.

Time Warner Cable Sports, a informal sports network that carries Lakers games, has carriage agreements in place with several distributors including DirecTV, Cox Communications, Charter Communications, Verizon and ATT Inc, that means it collects fees from them.

But Time Warner Cable, a country’s second largest user with some-more than 12 million subscribers, has also been a outspoken censor of rising programming costs. Its executives have pronounced that one reasons it is signing these costly contracts is to pledge entrance to sports programming during a reasonable cost over a prolonged term.

Dodgers games now atmosphere on Fox’s Prime Ticket network, and Reuters reported that Fox had bid to replenish a agreement with a team.

Fox Sports and Time Warner Cable clashed final April, when a wire user motionless opposite profitable a $3.95 per-subscriber monthly price that Fox Sports San Diego charges wire and satellite operators to lift a channel. Fox controls a rights to San Diego Padres round games.

Lingering passion between a dual companies could lift over to expected negotiations between Fox and Time Warner Cable to extend a wire operator’s agreement to lift a Yankee Entertainment and Sports (YES) network, that binds a rights to Yankee round and Brooklyn Nets basketball games, according to one chairman with believe of a arrangement.

News Corp paid $500 million in Nov for a 49 percent interest in YES, and will work a wire channel for partners that embody group owners and other investors.

That understanding puts Fox in a position to remove increasing fees from Time Warner Cable when a understanding to lift a channel expires in a initial entertain of 2014, a chairman said.

Time Warner Cable could palliate a dispute by similar to concede KTTV, Fox’s internal promote hire in Los Angles, to promote some games that a Dodgers would offer to non-cable and satellite subscribers, a chairman added

The chairman pronounced that conjunction a Dodgers nor Time Warner Cable have lifted a theme with Fox.

(Reporting by Liana B. Baker in New York and Lisa Richwine and Ronald Grover in Los Angeles; Editing by Peter Lauria, Jeffrey Benkoe and Tim Dobbyn)

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