Cinedigm Partnering With FUBU to Offer New Free Lifestyle Channel
A recent report from Horowitz Research shows that Black audiences are severely underserved by free, ad-supported TV (FAST) channels in the United States. Digital entertainment conglomerate Cinedigm is attempting to reverse that trend, or at least to improve the amount of FAST content made intentionally for Black viewers.
Cinedigm is partnering with FUBU to launch the “For Us By Us Network.” The new channel aims to serve the growing appetite for new and fresh content in Black households and for viewers looking for otherwise untold stories on television. Cinedigm will distribute the channel, which will appear on many different FAST services, though the company did not specify which outlets would be carrying the channel initially. It’s highly likely that Cinedigm’s free streaming service Cineverse will offer the channel when it launches.
“We are excited to partner with FUBU to bring their seminal lifestyle brand to the rapidly growing FAST market and establish them as a leader in video streaming services that meet the needs of the African American community,” Cinedigm EVP Marc Rashba said. “We will bring our extensive expertise in enthusiast channels and our industry-leading Matchpoint platform to create a compelling service for this discerning brand. With their longstanding history and stature that this lifestyle brand maintains with the African American community, we plan to grow the reach of this brand with everything at our disposal including original new offerings across theatrical, podcasts, physical products, audiobooks and other formats.”
The For Us By Us Network will feature high-quality movies, authentic and raw content around issues, and personalities and trends related to the hip-hop culture and lifestyle. The channel comes from the minds of “Shark Tank” investor Daymond John and fashion mogul J. Alexander Martin, who came together to create the FUBU brand in the 1990s.
“As one of the founders of FUBU, I have gained a very deep comprehension and awareness about the urban consumer and what appeals to them not only in fashion, but entertainment as well,” said Martin. “We created the For Us By Us Network so that we can provide high quality, positive content for our culture.”
Cinedigm is not the only media outlet stepping up its offerings of FAST channels specializing in content made for Black audiences. More channels are available now than at this time last year on the vast majority of larger services, with Freevee (seven new Black-focused channels), Plex (six more), and Local Now, The Roku Channel and Tubi (each adding four) showing the greatest growth.
There’s no word on when the For Us By Us Network will be available to users, but the official announcement from FUBU and Cinedigm means that it’s likely to be available relatively soon. Users won’t have to be subscribed to Cineverse to get the FAST channel, but that will almost certainly be one of the first services to premiere the For Us By Us Network.
Cineverse is a free ad-supported video-on-demand service featuring 19,000+ films and TV series. The library includes content from sianCrush, Bloody Disgusting, The Bob Ross Channel, The Country Channel, CONtv, CONtv Anime, Crime Hunters, Docurama, The Dove Channel, The Elvis Presley Channel, Fandor, and Screambox. Subscribers can go ad-free for $2.99/month.
Alongside the VOD library, Cineverse has several FAST channels with an integrated program guide, allowing users to easily browse between channels and access the genres they love. Depending on your platform, the app may be titled “Cinehouse.”
The service will provide content recommendations based on real-time feedback from viewers.
Cineverse will eventually be available as a channel on Amazon Prime Video with a 7-day free trial for the ad-free version.