With the coming NBA and NFL season, Sinclair Broadcast Group Bally Sports+ streaming services will launch its long-anticipated Bally Sports+ streaming service next month for $19.99 a month, across all 19 Bally Sports-brand regional sport networks on September 26.
Subscribers will have access to live, local NBA and NHL broadcasts, pre- and post-game shows, regional college football and basketball and high school sports, among other content.
In an SEC filing a year ago, Sinclair predicted Bally Sports+ could eventually attract about 4.4 million subscribers and bring around $2 billion in annual revenue.
The service will be distributed on mobile and tablet devices operating on iOS or Android, Android TV, TvOS, and BallySports.com.
This follows the June pre-launch of Bally Sports+ in five regional markets -- Bally Sports Detroit, Bally Sports Kansas City, Bally Sports Florida, Bally Sports Sun and Bally Sports Wisconsin.
In May, Diamond Sports Group -- the regional sports network (RSN) unit under Sinclair -- hired Michael Schneider, a senior Hulu marketing executive, to be the chief operating officer and general manager of Bally Sports+, its new direct-to-consumer (D2C) sports division.
Diamond Sports Group has been working for a few years to solve problems among traditional pay TV providers, some of whom have backed out RSN carriage-- due to weak profit margins.
This includes a number of virtual pay TV providers that dropped Bally Sports RSNs -- including Hulu + Live TV and YouTube TV.
For its second-quarter period, Sinclair's overall advertising revenues sank 25% to $366 million, primarily due to lower results from Sinclair' Diamond Sports Group. Distribution revenue was also impacted, sinking to $430 million -- less than half the total of $1.1 billion it reported a year ago.
Better news for Diamond Sports in April was Sinclair's company-wide renewal of the retransmission carriage deal for its TV stations with Charter Communications service. This included carriage of Bally Sports RSNs.