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Former Apple executive to lead sports streaming service

Since a trio of media titans announced a new sports-focused streaming service Last month, key details of the project were shrouded in mystery. How much would that cost? Where would he be based? And who would run the new company?

Today, some details are starting to emerge.

On Friday, the companies behind the service – Fox, Disney and Warner Bros. Discovery – announced it would be led by Pete Distad, a former Apple executive who was in charge of distribution of the tech giant's Apple TV+ streaming service. Mr. Distad, 50, will be responsible for strategy, distribution, marketing and sales of the new company once it is officially established, working from Los Angeles.

In selecting Mr. Distad, an executive with experience in both technology and media, the companies behind the service signaled that the new service needed a leader who understands the old-fashioned economics of cable television and the promise of rapid development of the streaming sector. Before joining Apple, Mr. Distad helped launch Hulu, the last major streaming joint venture.

In a statement, Mr. Distad said he looked forward to bringing together “the cutting-edge sports content portfolios” of the three companies.

“This is an incredible opportunity to create and grow a differentiated product that will serve sports fans in the United States outside of the traditional pay TV package,” said Mr. Distad.

At Apple, Mr. Distad helped fuel the tech giant's expansion into live sports. During his tenure, Apple struck deals to stream Major League Soccer and Major League Baseball games, joining the growing list of tech companies, such as Amazon, that now offer their customers access to live sports.

In a statement, the companies behind the service called Mr. Distad an “accomplished innovator and leader” with “extensive experience launching and developing new video services.”

“We are confident that he and his team will build a highly compelling, fan-focused product for our target market,” the companies said.

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