FuboTV, the fastest-growing virtual MVPD in the U.S., has today announced that it has raised US$15 million in Series B funding. Led by significant investments from Sky and 21st Century Fox, the round will be used to grow the company’s expanding sports-first streaming video offering, develop new features and market the service to increase its subscriber base. As a result of the equity agreements, both Sky and 21st Century Fox will take board positions.
FuboTV provides subscribers with a premium, over-the-top bundle of sports TV channels, featuring hundreds of live soccer matches, club videos, series, documentaries and other English, Spanish and Portuguese content. Officially launched in January 2015, fuboTV has quickly become the second-largest virtual MVPD in the U.S., growing to more than 40,000 subscribers to date. Its customer base is strongly concentrated in millennial males who are not traditional MVPD customers, and is 30 percent Latin American.
The fuboTV service has in place distribution deals with TV channels that hold U.S. rights to major worldwide sporting events, including soccer matches from more than half of the leading international soccer leagues and tournaments, a primary driver of its first-year subscriber growth. These include Univision Networks, beIN SPORTS, GolTV and Benfica TV, as well as the recently announced addition of entertainment networks targeting millennials such as El Rey Network, Pivot and REVOLT. Neither 21st Century Fox nor Sky are currently licensing content to fuboTV, but both companies intend to work closely with fuboTV as it continues to grow.
Emma Lloyd, director of corporate development & strategic investments at Sky, commented: “We’re really excited to be investing in fuboTV. This investment will provide Sky with real insight and we look forward to working with the fuboTV team as they continue to explore new opportunities for growth.”
“We are very impressed by the fuboTV management team and the great progress they have made in a very short time,” said Ravi Ahuja, executive vice president, business operations and development for 21st Century Fox operating unit Fox Networks Group. “Ultimately, we believe streaming services like fuboTV will drive further innovation and be a win-win for consumers and programmers.”
Prior to fuboTV, the company’s founders David Gandler (CEO), Sung Ho Choi (CTO) and Alberto Horihuela (CMO) built a strong track record in the entertainment and digital media industries, most recently as executives at OTT video company DramaFever – which is being acquired by Warner Bros.
“The support from two of the most prominent media companies in the world strongly positions fuboTV to meet the demands of the quickly evolving sports rights ecosystem,” said Gandler. “Investment from 21st Century Fox, Sky and the prominent individuals and organizations part of this Series B round demonstrates our potential to become leaders among linear OTT services.”
Sky and 21st Century Fox each invested US$6 million of the total US$15 million Series B round, which also includes investments from DCM Ventures, Luminari Capital, LionTree Partners, Edgar Bronfman, Jr. (Managing Partner at Accretive LLC and former CEO and Chairman of Warner Music Group), Chris Silbermann (founding partner, ICM Partners) and David Stern (former NBA commissioner and member of the Basketball Hall of Fame). fuboTV’s Series A investors are listed below.
fuboTV is the fastest-growing virtual MVPD in the U.S., bundling sports TV networks with entertainment content that complements its core offering. Officially launched in January 2015, it is currently the second-largest service of its kind, and the top provider of live streaming soccer in the U.S. Bringing subscribers access to linear channels from a growing line-up of content partners, fuboTV is available on desktops via www.fubo.tv; on Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick; Android phones and tablets; Apple TV; Chromecast; iPad; iPhone; Kindle Fire; Roku; and T-Mobile’s Binge On. The company has raised a total of $20.6 million in funding to date. fuboTV closed a $4 million Series A round in August 2015, led by DCM Ventures and including I2BF Digital, LionTree Partners, Luminari Capital and Univision Communications Inc., as well as seed investments from Anthony Vinciquerra, former CEO of Fox Networks Group, and Blake Krikorian, co-founder of Sling Media. In February 2016, the company closed a $15 million Series B round led by Sky and 21st Century Fox and including DCM Ventures, Luminari Capital, LionTree Partners, Edgar Bronfman, Jr. (Managing Partner at Accretive LLC and former CEO and Chairman of Warner Music Group), Chris Silbermann (founding partner, ICM Partners) and David Stern (former NBA commissioner and member of the Basketball Hall of Fame).
About 21st Century Fox
21st Century Fox is the world's premier portfolio of cable, broadcast, film, pay TV and satellite assets spanning six continents across the globe. Reaching more than 1.8 billion subscribers in approximately 50 local languages every day, 21st Century Fox is home to a global portfolio of cable and broadcasting networks and properties, including FOX, FX, FXX, FXM, FS1, Fox News Channel, Fox Business Network, FOX Sports, Fox Sports Network, National Geographic Channels, STAR India, 28 local television stations in the U.S. and more than 300 international channels; film studio Twentieth Century Fox Film; and television production studios Twentieth Century Fox Television and a 50% ownership interest in Endemol Shine Group. The Company also holds a 39.1% ownership interest in Sky, Europe’s leading entertainment company, which serves 21 million customers across five countries. For more information about 21st Century Fox, please visit www.21CF.com.
Sky is Europe's leading entertainment company, serving 21 million customers across five countries: UK, Ireland, Germany, Austria and Italy. We offer the best and broadest range of content, deliver market-leading customer service and use innovative new technology to give customers a better TV experience, whenever and wherever they choose.
Sky has annual revenues of over £11 billion and is Europe's leading investor in television content with a combined programming budget of £4.9 billion. The group employs 30,000 people and is listed on the London Stock Exchange (SKY).
For more information visit www.sky.com/corporate.
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Source : businesswire.com