Dish Network and CMT are partnering on an a pair of exclusive programs. As part of the deal, Dish will premiere new editions of concert series Invitation Only, which will later air on CMT. Dish will also create a branded franchise to air events and specials, CMT Front Row Only on Dish Network.
The deal gives Dish exclusive content not found on other satellite or cable providers, a valuable asset when seeking to differentiate the product from the competition.
Dish’s primary competitor in the satellite space, DirecTV, made waves last year by acquiring rights to premiere episodes of
Friday Night Lights in a deal with NBC. In that deal, FNL premiered on DirecTV, eventually landing on NBC a few months later. DirecTV has also made bids to “save” other cult series, including FX’s The Riches, and has inked deals to air canceled program.
While a concert series may not have the cult following of a FNL, it is still exclusive content, and the concerts feature the sort of brand names that will likely catch many viewers’ attention.
Invitation Only will launch June 2 with Darius Rucker, with future artists including Reba McEntire, Sugarland and Brad Paisley. New installments will air monthly.