Friday, June 30, 2017

NewsMaxTV Expands Distribution Via AT&T

Conservative news channel NewsmaxTV is getting a distribution boost by returning to DirecTV’s channel lineup as of today.

As part of the deal with DirecTV parent AT&T, Newsmax is also being added to AT&T’s U-verse platform for the first time. Together the deal brings Newsmax about 25 million subscribers, 21 million of them from DirecTV. AT&T’s U-verse platform has been shrinking since the telco giant acquired DirecTV in 2016 and has sought to migrate U-verse subscribers to its larger satellite service.

According to Variety, Newsmax is the most prominent of a handful of conservative news and commentary outlets that have been gaining traction in recent years. Many in the cable news market see an opening for a right-leaning outlet now that Fox News has faced such upheaval, including the loss of marquee anchor Bill O’Reilly. Newsmax has frequently been mentioned as a possible new home for O’Reilly, who hastily exited Fox News in April amid a cascading scandal about his history of settling sexual harassment suits.

“With our launch on DirecTV and U-verse, Newsmax TV has the opportunity to serve more viewers,” Newsmax Media CEO Christopher Ruddy said. “Newsmax TV has a unique audience of Americans seeking news they can’t get from other major networks.”

Newsmax had been on DirecTV in less-than-optimum channel position until about a year ago. It’s not clear what drove AT&T to restore Newsmax in a better position near other all-news cabler.

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