Ask Us: Why doesn’t Hotwire carry ACC Network?

Published 7:57 am Monday, February 15, 2021

Editor’s note: Ask Us is a weekly feature published online Mondays and in print on Tuesdays. We’ll seek to answer your questions about items or trends in Rowan County. Have a question? Email it to askus@salisburypost.com.

Salisbury and Rowan County are in the heart of Atlantic Coast Conference territory. So, multiple readers asked why Hotwire’s TV offerings don’t include the ACC Network.

The answer, says Jonathan Bullock, executive vice president of corporate development and government for Hotwire, involves the cost of services.

In 2018, after a successful referendum on Salisbury ballots, Hotwire Communications took over the operation and management of the city’s fiber optic network, Fibrant. Despite its good quality of services, the city-operated Fibrant struggled financially because a confluence of factors made operations more costly than expected. Among those factors were a recession, efforts to make its launch more difficult by the N.C. General Assembly, a customer shift away from traditional TV and home phone service as well as tens of millions of dollars in debt.

The ACC Network launched in August 2019. Bullock said the network’s creation began when ABC, ESPN and Disney as well as the ACC combined the rights to a number of games that were previously on other networks Hotwire carried.

“There was no new product, no new games carried, just the curation of a handful of the ACC games that were previously available to Hotwire customers,”Bullock said.

To ensure the affordability of TV services, Hotwire has resisted increasing costs to customers, “especially when the increase does not bring new content,” Bullock said.

“Hotwire continues to work with all networks, including Disney, to find a way to bring new content and ACCN to your home at a fair price to all our customers,” he said.

Bullock said he and his wife both graduated from ACC schools in North Carolina and that he empathizes with the desire for Hotwire to carry the ACC Network.

He encouraged people who want to contact him directly about the matter to email jonathan@hotwiremail.com.

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