FuboTV will today soft-launch a live, ad-supported, free-to-consumer streaming network for U.S. sports fans.
The company’s intention to launch such a network “later this year” was first reported in May by The Wrap.
The new Fubo Sports Network will initially be distributed through free, ad-supported service Xumo — available in 35 million U.S. households via smart TVs, mobile, web, and streaming set-top boxes — and as part of FuboTV’s base subscription package, reports Variety.
“There’s an opportunity to cater to the demand for free content” to attract "entry-level" video users who are potential subscribers to FuboTV's paid bundles, CEO David Gandler told Variety. He added that the company hopes to add more partners to expand the free service’s reach to 50 million by August.
Fubo Sports Network will debut with content from the parent TV network, but begin adding original programming — including a weekly sports talk show — in August. The plans call for it to eventually offer 24-hour programming.
FuboTV is aiming to realize $5 million in incremental ad revenue from the new free service in its first year, Gandler told Variety. The network will have an ad load of five to six minutes per hour, and use FuboTV’s existing server-side ad insertion system.