Disney Says 160 ABC Affiliates Signed Up for Over-The-Top

Disney-ABC Television Group says it has signed up more than 160 stations for its Clearinghouse initiative designed to get the network and its affiliates available on more over-the-top distributors.

Those stations are now either on or are about to be carried on the ABC app and such digital carriers as DirecTV Now, Sony PlayStation Vue, Google’s YouTube TV and CenturyLink.

The stations are owned by groups including Sinclair Broadcast Group, Hearst Television, Tegna and E.W. Scripps.

“We are committed to digital distribution solutions that benefit the local/national relationship and the value it brings to consumers, so this is a real win for us, our affiliates and our video partners,” said Ben Sherwood, Disney Media Networks co-chair and Disney-ABC Television Group president. “I’m extremely proud of our team’s continued leadership and hard work in creating innovative business opportunities that move both our company and the entire industry forward.”

The ABC OTT footprint now represents about 90% of U.S. TV households, the network said.

The Clearinghouse lets ABC affiliates opt into pre-negotiated agreements for digital distribution of their linear feeds and possible VOD products.

“Together, we have worked diligently to help craft a creative solution that delivers the unparalleled strength of ABC affiliates across the country directly to viewers watching their local stations on these digital platforms,“ added ABC Affiliate Board of Governors chairman Emily Barr, president and CEO, Graham Media Group. “Local television stations are deeply imbedded in their communities, and viewers rely on them for news, information and entertainment, now more than ever, anywhere on any device from TVs and desktops to tablets and mobile phones.“

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.