UPDATED: 9:45 a.m. ETon Aug. 15
Fox Sports 1 will launch across all major distributors, the network announced Thursday morning, with MSOs DirecTV, Time Warner Cable and Dish Network signing on to carry the all-sports cable channel.
First reported by the the Los Angeles Timeslate Wednesday, the three distributors will add 40 million homes to the network, which makes its much-anticipated debut Saturday. The launch to 90 million homes will be the largest cable sports network launch in history.
"We are thrilled that virtually all pay-television customers across America will have access to Fox Sports 1," said Mike Hopkins, president of distribution for Fox Networks. "This network launch is a major milestone for Fox and will alter the sports television landscape. We are grateful to our distribution partners for making this all possible."
Fox, which will roll out the network from the racing channel Speed,
was reportedly seeking a big fee increase from distributors to carry the network.
According to SNL Kagan, Speed received about 23
cents per-subscriber, per-month, while the price for Fox Sports 1 in the
first year is said to be around 80 cents.
Sports Business Journal is also reporting that Bright House Networks, who's programming deals are negotiated by Time Warner Cable, has agreed to carry the channel as well.