SBD/4/Sports Media

ARE FOX AND ABC CLOSE TO DEAL FOR AFFILS TO SHARE NFL COSTS?

          Fox will begin meetings today with its affils in L.A.
     and discuss a plan to have affils help defray the cost of
     the network's $4.4B NFL deal, according to Rich Katz of
     DAILY VARIETY.  Fox had sent a letter that "outlined
     contributions it expects from its stations," which included
     a plan in which the affils "would return 15 spots per week
     to the network, beginning July 1."  The plan would require
     stations to "return money due from retransmission consent
     agreements expiring next year."  Beginning July 1, Fox would
     also "give back to affiliates three spots that were removed
     from local inventory under the NFL agreement that expired in
     January.  Money from these spots, sold locally, would go to
     the network, except for a 15% agency commission and 8% local
     sales commission."  Fox said it would also "increase" the
     number of affils' pre-game inventory to 13 spots, from 11,
     but "all the commissions would go to the network" (DAILY
     VARIETY, 6/4).  In related news, at the ABC affils meeting
     in Orlando, DAILY VARIETY reports that "progress has been
     made" in talks where stations would "contribute" about $30M
     to help ABC cover its new NFL contract."  A deal is expected
     in "a few weeks at the earliest" (DAILY VARIETY, 6/4).

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ABC, News Corp./Fox, NFL, Media, Walt Disney

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