Fox Sports (Asian TV network)
|Network||Fox Sports International|
(The Walt Disney Company (Southeast Asia))
|Slogan||We Are Fox Sports (2013–2014)|
Where Sport Goes Boom! (2014–2016)
|Picture format||1080i (HDTV)|
(downscaled to 16:9 480i/576i for the SDTV feed)
|Owner||Fox Networks Group Asia Pacific|
(Walt Disney Direct-to-Consumer & International)
|Closed||16 November 2020 (SD feed, Malaysia)|
1 January 2021 (Taiwan)
March 1, 2021 (Malaysia, unifi TV)
Fox Sports (formerly ESPN Star Sports) is a pan-Asian pay television network broadcasting in Asia, currently operated by Fox Networks Group Asia Pacific, a subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company (Southeast Asia). It also oversaw a version of STAR Sports available in Mainland China and South Korea. As ESPN Star Sports, it was also operated in South Asia, but Star India took over the Indian business in 2013.
Originally launched in early 1990s as STAR Sports (earlier Prime Sports) and ESPN by Star TV and ESPN International respectively, both parties agreed to combine their operations in Asia in October 1996. News Corporation took the full control of the venture in 2012, and relaunched the channels in two phases in January 2013 and August 2014, respectively.
STAR Sports was originally launched as Prime Sports on 21 August 1991. STAR TV, based in Hong Kong, operated the channel in partnership with TCI in the United States, which owned Prime-branded regional sports channels there. The channel was broadcast across the continent of Asia, reaching from the Far East to the Middle East, as with AsiaSat 1's footprint. STAR TV have since regionalised the channel to serve its huge viewerships.
ESPN was originally a part of the so-called "Gang of Five", which was a consortium that was set up to compete against STAR TV in the region. (The others in the group were CNN International, HBO, TVB [with TVB Superchannel] and the Australian Broadcasting Corporation [with Australia Television International]) The consortium's channels were initially transmitted via Palapa satellite, but were later also added to Apstar satellite.
Operations combined as ESPN STAR Sports
ESPN and STAR Sports were competing with each other across Asia, but their businesses were making loss. In October 1996, both channels agreed to combine their operations in the region. The resulting joint venture, later named ESPN STAR Sports, was to be headquartered in Singapore (where ESPN's operations in Asia had been based).
On 16 January 1998, a version of Fox Sports was launched in the Middle East, as carried by Star Select. This apparently replaced ESPN STAR Sports in the region, but the pan-Asian version will still be available via the AsiaSat and Palapa satellites.
Relaunch as Fox Sports
On 6 June 2012, it was announced that News Corporation would buy ESPN International's share in ESPN Star Sports. Later, Star India took over ESPN Star Sports' businesses in India, and relaunched all of its sports channels under the Star Sports brand on 6 November 2013.
On 28 January 2013, ESPN and ESPN HD was relaunched as Fox Sports and Fox Sports Plus HD in Hong Kong, Taiwan and Southeast Asia. The regional version of ESPNews was relaunched as Fox Sports News, and SportsCenter Asia was relaunched as Fox Sports Central.
On 15 August 2014, Star Sports was rebranded as Fox Sports 2, and Fox Sports Plus HD was renamed Fox Sports 3 (or Fox Sports HD in Vietnam). The corresponding HD and SD versions of all three channels were also launched.
The relaunch of ESPN Star Sports as Fox Sports did not affect much of East Asia, as a version of Star Sports broadcast to Mainland China and South Korea kept the brand, and instead, the version of ESPN for Mainland China was renamed as Star Sports 2 on 10 January 2014.
ESPN International has since refocused on its digital business building out online properties for football (ESPNFC), cricket (CricInfo), Formula 1 (ESPNF1), and Australian rugby union (ESPNscrum), and established partnership with Multi Screen Media in India (Sony ESPN TV channel until 31 March 2020), TV5 Network in the Philippines (ESPN5 programming division), Tencent in Mainland China (a dedicated ESPN section at qq.com), and Mediacorp in Singapore (local ad sales only for the ESPN website through its Partner Network division).
On 31 March 2020, the website of Fox Sports Asia merged into and redirected to global version of ESPN website.
On September 18, 2020, Disney announced that it would shut down Fox Sports operations in Taiwan at end of 2020. It was later revealed that operations in Taiwan would end on January 1, 2021 following years on losing money in the region.
On March 1, 2021, all FOX Networks Group channels were terminated throughout Malaysia unifi TV, during Launch the Disney+Hotstar on Malaysia, but Astro still Available.
- Fox Sports (formerly ESPN)
- Fox Sports 2 (formerly Prime Sports and Star Sports)
- Fox Sports 3 (formerly ESPN HD and Fox Sports Plus HD)
- Fox Sports News (formerly ESPNews): The channel was first launched as ESPNews in November 2009 in Singapore on Singtel's Mio TV, and later expanded to other areas, including Hong Kong, where it was launched in August 2011 on PCCW's Now TV. The channel was renamed as Fox Sports News on 28 January 2013. The channel was gradually discontinued in 2017: It ceased broadcasting on 1 April 2017 in most areas, but continued until 24 April in Hong Kong, 3 May in Malaysia, and 31 May in Taiwan.
- Fox Football Channel: The channel was launched in October 2012 in Malaysia. Its programming was mainly consisted of association football matches and shows. It ceased broadcasting in 2015.
The individual regional variations of Fox Sports channels include:
- Hong Kong: Additionally, a schedule variant is offered to Hong Kong Cable Television customers due to broadcasting rights issues.
- Malaysia and Brunei: This variant does not provide coverage of field hockey events.
- Taiwan: This variant which was transmitted by Fox Networks Group Taiwan and produced from the studios in Taipei. The headquarter in Taipei closed on January 1, 2021.
It also overseed a version of Star Sports broadcast to Mainland China and South Korea, and Star Sports 2 (formerly known as ESPN until 31 December 2014) broadcast to Mainland China.
In South Korea, Fox Sports was partnered with JTBC until 11 March 2020, which operated JTBC3 Fox Sports (now known as JTBC Golf&Sports). As ESPN Star Sports, it has previously partnered with MBC (MBC ESPN (now known as MBC Sports+)) from 2001 until July 2010, and SBS (SBS ESPN (now known as SBS Sports)) from December 2010 until 2013.
Broadcast rights for various sports properties contain territorial limitations and in a lot of instances, the rights indicated below may not pertain to all Asian territories in which Fox Sports operates.
Australian Rules Football
- Australian Football League (except Philippines)
- Major League Baseball:
- Select spring training and regular season games (home games only and select road games)
- ESPN Major League Baseball (Sunday Night Baseball and select special games, tie-breaker and Home Run Derby)
- MLB All-Star Game (MLB International feed)
- Postseason (wild card, Division Series and Championship Series)
- World Series (MLB International feed)
- World Baseball Classic
- Korean Baseball Organization (ESPN feed)
- World Boxing Matches
- Professional Bull Riders events
- Cricket World Cup (all matches available on official website and Fox+, highlights on television)
- Under-19 Cricket World Cup (all matches available on Fox+, highlights and live coverage of final on television)
- Women's Cricket World Cup (all matches only available on Fox+, highlights on television)
- AFC Champions League (from play-offs, for West Zone play-offs until quarter finals only available on Fox+)
- AFC U-19 Championship
- AFC U-16 Championship
- AFC Futsal Championship
- AFC Futsal Club Championship (all matches only available on Fox+)
- AFF Suzuki Cup (only for Brunei and Malaysia in 2018)
- Serie A (only for Brunei, Malaysia, and Singapore through 2020–21 season)
- Danish Super League (one match per week, 2019–present (originally from June 2020 with the remaining matches in 2019–20))
- DBU Pokalen (three matches (both semi finals and a final) in 2019–20)
- A-League (only for Guam, Mongolia, Northern Marianas and Palau)
- The Masters Tournament
- U.S. Open Championship
- The Open Championship
- PGA Championship
- PGA EuroPro Tour
- ANA Inspiration
- United States Women's Open Championship (golf)
- Women's PGA Championship
- Ricoh Women's British Open
- The Evian Championship
- Ladies European Tour (Highlights only)
- LPGA Tour
Mixed Martial Arts
- Formula One
- FIA Formula 2 Championship
- FIA Formula 3 Championship
- FIM Motocross World Championship
- Superbike World Championship
- World Touring Car Cup (only for highlights)
- WeatherTech SportsCar Championship
- FIA World Endurance Championship (only for highlights)
- IndyCar Series
- Formula E
- Supercars Championship
- MotoAmerica (2020–present)
- National Rugby League (only for Brunei, Malaysia, and Singapore)
- The G.O.A.T. (only for the Philippines)
- Full Throttle (only for the Philippines)
- 76 Rider (only for Indonesia)
- Special Force 2 Pro League
- Fox Sports Live (pre/post match/game/race shows)
- 2 Wheels
- Chequered Flag
- The John Dykes Show
- Sport Confidential
- International Motorsports News
- Gilette World of Sports
- Football Asia
- John Dykes
- Colette Wong
- Paula Malai Ali
- Yvette King
- Jason de la Peña
- Steve Dawson
- Edward Russell
- Alex Yoong
- Matteo Guerinoni
- Matthew Marsh
- Jazeman Jaafar
- Marlon Stöckinger
- Clarke, Stewart (13 December 2018). "Disney Sets Out International Leadership Team Post-Fox Deal". Variety.
- Fabrikant, Geraldine (4 March 1996). "Broadcasters Bet on Sports As First Step in New Markets". The New York Times. Retrieved 10 January 2019.
- "Rival sport channels ESPN, Star TV team up together". Advertising Age. 9 October 1996. Retrieved 11 January 2019.
- Sullivan, Maureen (15 January 1997). "Asian TV team christens venture ESPN Star Sports". Variety. Retrieved 11 January 2019.
- "FOX Sports Changes Name" (Press release). STAR TV. Archived from the original on 8 May 1999. Retrieved 16 January 2019.
- Szalai, Georg (6 June 2012). "News Corp. to Buy Out ESPN's Stake in Asian TV Venture". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 8 January 2019.
- Steel, Emily (7 June 2012). "News Corp to take over ESPN Star Sports". Financial Times. Retrieved 8 January 2019.
- "ESPN STAR Sports to be under STAR in India". Business Standard. 28 January 2013. Retrieved 8 January 2019.
- "Star Sports: A new logo, packaging & brand identity". Indian Television. 8 November 2013. Retrieved 10 January 2019.
- "Star junks ESPN brand, launches Star Sports with 6 channels and website". MxM. 6 November 2013. Retrieved 10 January 2019.
- Dhillon, Rajina (9 October 2012). "ESS launches FOX Football Channel". Marketing. Retrieved 16 January 2019.
- Terrado, Reuben (9 January 2013). "ESPN fades off in Asia as Fox takes over". Spin.ph. Retrieved 8 January 2019.
- Chan, U-Gene (24 January 2013). "ESPN network to be renamed FOX Sports in Singapore, Asia". The Straits Times. Retrieved 8 January 2019.
- Christensen, Nic (4 July 2014). "Fox to reorganises its sports channels". Mumbrella Asia. Retrieved 8 January 2019.
- Valisno, Jeffrey O. (26 August 2014). "Fox completes rebranding of sports channels". BusinessWorld. Retrieved 8 January 2019.
- Haskins, Will (17 June 2014). "ESPN Eyes Brand Revival in Asia". Media Business Asia. Retrieved 4 July 2014.
- "FOX Sports/ESPN Website Frequently Asked Questions". ESPN. 30 March 2020. Retrieved 8 June 2020.
- "Fox Sports announces plans to end services in Taiwan". Focus Taiwan - CNA English News. Central News Agency (Taiwan). 18 September 2020. Retrieved 25 December 2020.
- "Fox Sports to shut down Taiwan channels by year end". Focus Taiwan - CNA English News. Central News Agency (Taiwan). 21 October 2020. Retrieved 25 December 2020.
- "ESPN STAR Sports & Singtel Unveil ESPNEWS on mio TV" (Press release). Singtel. 18 November 2009. Retrieved 20 January 2019.
- Schwankert, Steven (16 August 2011). "ESPN Launches Two New Channels on Hong Kong's now TV". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 20 January 2019.
- "ESPN Reaches Agreement with Eclat Media Group to Provide Exclusive English-Language Coverage of KBO League, South Korea's Most Popular Sports League, throughout Canada, Parts of Latin America, the Caribbean, Europe, Middle East, Africa, and Select Countries in Asia". ESPN. 22 May 2020. Retrieved 3 June 2020.
- "FOX Sports Asia on Instagram: "The ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 starts today! 🔥🏆💯 .. Follow Fox Sports Asia for the latest news and updates. ✅✅✅ .. .. .. #icc #cricket🏏…"". Instagram. Retrieved 15 June 2019.
- "FOX+ the home of UFC® in Philippines". FOX+. Archived from the original on 4 May 2019. Retrieved 4 May 2019.