History[ edit ] Inthe Tennis Channel was founded by Steve Bellamywho soon hired Bruce Rider to head up programming and marketing. Dooley —became involved in the founding of the channel. This group invested and rounded up additional investors, Bain Capital VenturesJ. These founders felt with other single sports channel like the Golf Channel succeeding with a mostly male demographic and tennis having viewer of both sexes and of a desirable high-end demographic that a tennis channel would draw in advertisers. As the channel had not broadcast any of the four Grand Slam tournaments by then.
Print The Tennis Channel is launching a digital subscription service that puts a new spin on the established business model for TV sports programming.
Beginning Sunday, the sports network will begin selling a programming package directly to consumers. The new product veers from the established order of the pay-television industry.
At the same time, viewers increasingly are watching programming on mobile devices -- smartphones and tablets. And they are watching more than just short video clips.
Live sports is the perfect vehicle -- it is the most valuable content out there. Advertisement The latest digital offering from the Santa Monica television network launches Sunday to coincide with the start of the French Open tennis tournament.
Earlier this year, the WWE wrestling organization offered its own over-the-top subscription service directly to consumers. Until now, most cable television networks have not sold programming packages directly to consumers.
Networks did not want to jeopardize their lucrative relationships with pay-TV operators. That would put a strain on the economics of television.
So the major sports networks have taken a different route, partnering with the pay-TV operators. Consumers must demonstrate that they already subscribe to a cable or satellite TV service.
Then, they paused and threw in a few comments on a must-see TV grudge match between Maria Sharapova and Eugenie Bouchard from the same tournament. Was Tennis Channel abdicating its responsibilities?
Typically, there is no additional charge for pay-TV subscribers to stream the content on their computers or digital devices.
But the company also wanted to experiment with other models. A year ago, it launched a digital application that enables customers of satellite services DirecTV and Dish Network and several cable TV providers, including Cox Communications, to stream Tennis Channel action on their tablets and smartphones.
That application -- called Tennis Channel Everywhere and available on Android and iOS devices -- is offered at no additional charge to customers of certain pay-TV operators. In addition to live coverage of matches at the French Open and other tournaments, including the Davis Cup and Fed Cup, subscribers could watch classic matches, including rivalries between Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova and Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.
However, not all tennis matches will be available through the new service. Tennis Channel has U. Open in New York and the Australian Open.