Starz Reaches New Carriage Deal With Verizon FiOS, Stays Dark On Rival Optimum


While Starz remains dark on Altice USA’s Optimum cable systems, the premium cable network has reached a new multi-year carriage deal with Verizon FiOS, Optimum’s rival in the New York metro area.

The deal will continue the offering of Starz pay-TV, on-demand and online services in the 5 million households that get FiOS.

“Verizon has done a tremendous job in selling our premium services FiOS subscribers,” said Jeffrey Hirsch, chief operating officer for Starz, a division of Lionsgate. ”They are an industry leader in offering the best video content for its FiOS TV customers, and we look forward to working with them to enhance the premium experience for their Starz and Starz Encore subscribers.”

It has already been a busy 2018 for both companies on the carriage front. On Tuesday, FiOS announced a carriage deal with A+E Networks which, like many such arrangements lately, includes a provision for content production.

Starz’s week has not been as upbeat. In the early hours of New Year’s Day, it went dark on Optimum and the acrimonious dispute appears likely to linger — unless the notion of FiOS siphoning off Starz fans brings Altice back to the table.

Verizon and Cablevision, which was acquired by Altice in 2016, engaged in a bare-knuckle fight for video subscribers in the New York City suburbs for nearly a decade. (Time Warner Cable, now Charter’s Spectrum service, still controls most of the city itself.)

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