Fox News is the first media company to cancel its upfront in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak. The news behemoth had planned to host its annual pitch to the ad community on March 24.
"In a precautionary effort to keep our employees, client and agency partners safe, we have determined that it would be best to cancel our upcoming event in New York based on public health concerns due to coronavirus,” Jeff Collins, exec VP, advertising sales, Fox News, said in a statement.
Fox News is the only media company thus far to change upfront plans. But there is still time, as many of the events do not take place until May.
CNN still plans to host an event to showcase its content and opportunities for marketers on Thursday, according to a spokeswoman, while Comcast’s FreeWheel still intends to host its presentation on March 12. A spokeswoman for FreeWheel said the company is monitoring the situation.
A&E Networks and AMC Networks also have events planned for later in the month that still remain in place.
The IAB has not made any changes regarding the NewFronts, which will take place from April 27 through May 6, at this time, according to a spokeswoman.
“IAB continues to monitor the situation. As NewFronts is a domestic U.S. event, and there are no domestic travel advisories, we are not making any changes at this time,” she said via email.
Fox News’ decision follows moves by tech companies like Adobe, Google, Facebook and Twitter to cancel or change their participation in conferences and events.