Comcast Xfinity users subscribed to Starz may lose it forever following the upcoming contract end this December. In a statement by Starz, they announced they are in the process of reaching an agreement with cable network monolith Comcast to continue providing access to its 17 channels.
We continue to try to reach an agreement with Comcast that is fair, reasonable and ensures our shared customers’ continued access to a lineup of premium television content that speaks to them.
Earlier this year, Lionsgate vice chairman Michael Burns, lamented about how Starz was a misunderstood but complementary asset to the company’s portfolio. But, speculations arose and investors reacted when Burns was quoted saying:
Does that mean that it could get nasty and you go to war? Yeah, it could. We’ve done that before and everybody’s done that before, I’m not sure anyone benefits from that, but sometimes it’s necessary.
Now, jump ahead to October and Starz is warning its Comcast subscribers to either be vocal or demand a refund.
[Starz] urge our customers to make it known to Comcast that there is no replacement for Starz and demand that they continue to provide access to all of your favorite Starz shows or demand a refund.
Starz gets a Comcast response
Later in the day, Comcast released its own statement which you can read below.
We are continuing to negotiate to reach a deal with Starz that makes sense for us and our customers before our current deal expires, but we have been unable to do so at this time. Over the last decade, the video marketplace has evolved dramatically, with more and more streaming and direct-to-consumer offerings marketing themselves as an alternative to traditional cable. We have seen the streaming marketplace grow from essentially two services to dozens of significant OTT platforms, with more launching all the time. Starz has chosen to change its business model in response to these trends by making its content available a-la-carte on Amazon Prime and Roku and selling its service direct to the consumer through the Starz app. All we are asking for is the same treatment for our customers.
Starz was purchased for $4.4 billion in 2016 by Lionsgate with series under their belt like American Gods, Outlander, Vida, and a slew of others.