This afternoon the DISH Network came to terms with Professional Bull Riders Inc to be their exclusive satellite television provider. Although the terms of the deal were not released, DISH Network will pick up the remaining stops on this year’s Built Ford Tough Series, the 2009 World Finals, as well as the entire 2010 PBR schedule. DISH Network has stepped up to the plate, trying to lure DirecTV subscribers who lost their Versus feed. DISH Network has also gone further in providing a free preview of Versus to all its current customers through November, allowing then to see the PBR Finals.
PBR’s CEO Randy Bernard said that , “Millions of PBR fans are deeply concerned about the uncertain future of Versus’ availability on DirecTV. We have heard from tens of thousands of them and have been working diligently to provide options and alternatives.” At least the PBR has done something about increasing their fan base. The PBR is being proactive, unlike the NHL who are still dragging their feet about the whole Versus controversy.
DISH Network is also offering a $25 gift card for DirecTV subscribers who want to make the switch if you call in and mention the code “PBR”. DISH Network trails DirecTV in subscription 13.6 million to 18 million, but I can’t imagine many people making the switch unless you are a die hard fan of the PBR. I hope DISH Network doesn’t think that this will offset the 4.4 million subscription difference…I don’t even think they’ll be able to tell. But by DISH Network picking up the Versus feed, it tells customers that their company will pay the extra fees in order to be the “best satellite television provider”. Their accounting and finance team must have crunched the numbers and are projecting that the increase in subscriptions will offset the loss of paying Comcast.
It is nice to know that fans can make a difference and that they do matter. If you really want to watch the PBR and subscribe to DirecTV, then I guess you only have one real choice to make–you HAVE to switch.
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