NBCUniversal wants to make USA Network relevant again, and offset the effects of parent company Comcast’s decision to shut down NBC Sports Network.
Once a hot primetime channel, USA has since lost value for cord-cutters who can stream live sports and entertainment, but NBCU is making an effort to build the cable network back up.
Some of the conglomerate’s live sports content that isn’t heading to Peacock will instead make its way to USA — NHL, NASCAR, and English Premier League broadcasts in particular.
“This will make USA Network an extraordinarily powerful platform in the media marketplace and gives our sports programming a significant audience boost,” said NBC Sports Group Chairman Pete Bevacqua.
USA could look to increase its pay TV subscriber fees because of the sports content being added to the network, according to Bloomberg.
Some are less optimistic that there’s anything traditional TV can do to retain its bleeding customer base.
“Sports won’t solve what ails these networks,” analyst Michael Nathanson told Bloomberg. “The core concept of tune-in entertainment on linear networks is no longer attractive to younger customers. So their reach is falling.”
Last year, broadcast networks and pay TV accounted for just a chunk of Comcast’s revenue — $21 billion of the total $103.6 billion in sales.