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Comcast ‘in exclusive negotiations’ to acquire Xumo OTT service

Comcast is reported to be in advanced negotiations to acquire Xumo, the free, ad-supported streaming service as the US-based cable giant considers ways to ramp up its over-the-top offerings.

The talks between Comcast, which owns NBCUniversal and European pay-TV operator Sky, are exclusive but “it is possible that negotiations could break down”, according to sources speaking to the Wall Street Journal.

The California-based OTT platform is owned by electronics retailer Panasonic and media company Meredith Corporation.

Xumo was launched in 2011 and now has a footprint of over 35 million US households. It offers over 90 different channels across various genres, including sport.

Edgesport, the action sports channel operated by IMG, is one of the latest channels to be added to Xumo following a carriage agreement signed last year.

At the start of last year, golf’s PGA Tour renewed and expanded its agreement with Xumo. Under the initial tie-up signed in March 2018, the Tour and Xumo launched the first ad-supported PGA Tour OTT channel on smart televisions. The channel provides viewers with live and video-on-demand programming.

The PGA Tour distributes more than 175 hours of live featured holes coverage on Xumo from 23 events in addition to expanded highlights, player interviews and tournament recap shows.

Other sports channels available to Xumo’s US viewers include: Fox Sports; Fox Deportes; Eleven Sports; Copa90; Sports Illustrated; Football Daily; Motorvision; Hard Knocks Fighting; Glory Kickboxing; MMA Junkie; World Surf League; Cycle World; ACC Digital Network; plus esports channels Mobcrush and eSports Revolution.

Xumo is available to US viewers on smart TVs manufactured by Panasonic, Hisense, Magnavox, Philips, Samsung, Sanyo, Sharp and Vizio. It is also available on Roku devices and via Amazon FireTV.

Comcast’s NBC Universal is to launch its ‘Peacock’ entertainment streaming service in April. It will be supported by both advertising and subscriptions.