Sky Italia dropping Fox, Nat Geo & Disney channels
September 27, 2019
From Branislav Pekic in Rome
Sky Italia has informed its subscribers that, as of October 1st, it will cease distribution of five channels from broadcasters Fox, National Geographic and Disney.
The channels to be axed are Fox Animation, Fox Comedy and Nat Geo People (part of the Sky TV package), as well as the Disney XD and Disney in English channels (part of the Sky Famiglia package).
The pay-TV operator claims the decision is due to the expiry of the respective licensing agreements. However, Sky Italia said that some of the programmes that were broadcast on the five TV channels in question will still be aired on Fox, Fox Life, Fox Crime, Disney Channel, Disney Jr, National Geographic, and NatGeo Wild.
Sky Italia will continue to distribute the other channels from the three broadcasters, namely Fox, Fox Life, Fox Crime, National Geographic, National Geographic Wild, Disney Channel, Disney Junior and Baby TV, as “their licences are still valid”.
Meanwhile, Sky Italia is reaping benefits from the success of its free-to-air terrestrial TV channel TV8. In just four years, the audience share has gone up from 0.6 per cent to 2.5 per cent in August 2019. In comparison to last year, the share has increased by 15 per cent, reports daily Italia Oggi.
The growth in audience has also contributed positively to ad revenue, with TV8 expected to earn around €70.2 million in 2019.
For its part, sister channel Cielo has an audience share of 1-1.1 per cent, growing by 10 per cent since the start of the year.