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Virgin extends Sky channel distribution deal

Virgin Media logoVirgin Media has signed a new five-year agreement with Sky that will allow it to distribute more Sky channels on its cable TV platform and, for the first time, Sky channels through the Virgin Media app.

In what Virgin said was the “most comprehensive wholesale agreement ever agreed by Sky,” the cable TV provider will continue to deliver its existing Sky entertainment, sport and movie channel offering.

However, Virgin will now, in addition, offer Sky Sports 3 HD, Sky Sports 4 HD, and Sky Sports F1 HD, with Sky Sports News HD and Sky News HD to follow.

Sky’s entertainment channels, including Sky 1, Sky 2, Sky Living, Sky LivingIT and Sky Arts 1, will also join Virgin’s TV Anywhere app for Android and iOS devices for the first time.

From this summer, Virgin customers with subscriptions to Sky Movies and Sky Sports will also be able to access live and on-demand content on the go through the Sky Sports and Sky Movies apps.

Virgin said the deal will establish it as the “only provider to offer every live HD sports TV channel” in the UK – as Sky customers need a separate contract with BT to watch BT Sport, and BT customers are unable to watch “the majority” of the Sky Sports channels through BT’s pay TV offering.

“We’re pleased to have extended our partnership with Virgin Media, which increases the reach of our content and reinforces our broadly-based approach to growth,” said Sky CEO Jeremy Darroch.

Virgin Media CEO Tom Mockridge added: “We are excited our customers will be able to watch even more great TV from Sky on more devices as a result of the most extensive agreement ever signed between Virgin Media and Sky.”