The Fox Business Network channel was dropped from the Sirius XM line-up on December 27. FBN and FNC EVP Kevin Magee tells TVNewser, “We knew going in there was a distinct possibility of this happening. We’re disappointed but this is the business we’re in. They’re not bad people over there — they had a dilemma and it was last in, first out.” FBN began airing on XM in July.
Tyler Savery writes on Sirius Buzz, a blog about satellite radio, about the surprisingly large response the site received after FBN’s removal. “What we seem to have here is a network that was more popular than many realized, and something that Sirius XM should give some consideration to,” he writes.
“We’ve been heartened by the response,” says Magee. “It may be that somewhere slightly down the line they can add bandwidth or channels and we hope to be asked back at that point.”
We also asked Magee about the recent lawsuits filed by FBN against the Treasury Department and the Fed, and the continued expansion of the network. Click continued to see his comments…
Magee says there is no progress on the lawsuits yet. “The legal process takes a long time,” he says. “We just felt in both cases that the money being spent is taxpayer money, so why wouldn’t taxpayers be able to find out where it’s being spent. It just didn’t make sense to us. Since we got nothing but resistance from both the Treasury and Fed, we took the only step journalists take in this case, and get courts involved. It’s expensive but felt it was our job.”
Earlier this week at CES, TVNewser talked to FBN’s Connell McShane about the need for the network to continue to expand its distribution.
Magee agrees, but looks to other areas of expansion as well. “We’re in north of 45 million homes now. We’re talking to some of the hold outs,” says Magee. “We hope certainly to make our service the kind of service people ask for.
“We’ve put ourselves in hotel rooms, and we think that’s a good platform for us. People who fly to New York City, stay in a hotel, they might see us for first time, like our service, go home and call their cable company.”
Magee also points to the internet as a way to get viewers interested. “We think the future is as many platforms as you can possibly get,” he says. “We have deals with cable operators, so we can’t just simulcast on the internet. But there are other ways to go at that, so we can become a brand on business news.
“I think we have a pretty good service here. It’s very watchable, our anchors are extremely likable. This is an important time for business news.”