NBC Sky World News launch delayed due to coronavirus

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NBC Sky World News, an upcoming English language news service being developed by NBC News and Sky won’t launch as planned.

The service, which is being developed by the two divisions of Comcast, was slated to launch in the Summer of 2020.

However, NBC News Chairman Andy Lack informed staff the launch will be delayed and appeared to cite the coronavirus pandemic as a primary reason for the stall.

In an internal memo obtained by multiple media outlets, Lack cites remote working challenges and construction pauses on the network’s facilities due to government lockdowns, as some of the reasons for the delay.

It’s not clear when the launch will take place now — though it likely will hinge on how effective the pandemic fight is, with Lack noting the companies will periodically review plans.

Comcast bought Sky for $39 billion in 2018 and announced plans to develop a joint news effort between the two services.

NBC Sky World News is a signature part of Comcast’s efforts to reach the English speaking international market. NBC News already owns a 25% stake in English language Euronews.

WarnerMedia’s CNN International and select BBC World News feeds already operate in the arena — along with multiple other services based in countries around the globe.

The global service won’t be the only major Comcast effort delayed by the pandemic; NBC Sports‘ coverage of the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo will be pushed to 2021 along with the games themselves.