Tag Archives: Hulu Plus

Hulu Deal Falls Through

DirecTV-HuluRemember when we wrote that DirecTV was supposed to put pen to paper on a deal to acquire Hulu by the end of last month?  Big news: the deal, which would have given DirecTV the online presence it desperately needs, has been called off by Hulu owners 21st Century Fox, NBC Universal and Disney in a joint press release last Friday.  This is the second time Hulu’s co-owners have canceled acquisition proceedings for the company in two years, as they did the same thing in 2011 (although the group of owners then had different members).

In these most recent dealings, DirecTV is said to have offered just over US$1B (S$1.26B) for the OTT platform, which Hulu’s owners were supposedly prepared to accept.  However, they have obviously had second thoughts, and are now planning on infusing US$750 million (S$950 million) of their own funds in an effort to realize Hulu’s potential.  

Jim O’Neill thinks that said potential, and not necessarily an inadequate offer from DirecTV, was the driving force behind the decision to axe the deal:

“The easy answer, but not necessarily the correct answer, is that the price being offered just wasn’t enough…The right answer may be more that the triumvirate finally realized they had a plum in their hand.

[Hulu]‘s got cheap, fresh content coming in from its three owners, 4 million paid subscribers, and a lot of potential. It just hasn’t been realized by anyone other than its original CEO, Jason Kilar, who tried and tried again to tell his bosses what a great company he’d made for them.”

Hulu sits in a distant third place behind American OTT providers Netflix and Amazon, and this fresh supply of cash from its owners is certainly a step in the right direction.  However, Netflix dishes out more than US$2B (S$2.5B) per year to both buy and create new content, and Amazon reportedly spends about half that.  Furthermore, Hulu’s owners have made it clear that their new funding for the company will not be a yearly expenditure, so it seems that the company’s management will continue to be a step behind its competitors.

Referenced from theConvergence.tv and allthingsd.com

MyRepublic Launches Beta OTT Product

MyRepublic-TeleportSingapore internet provider MyRepublic, whose fibre broadband network is turning lots of heads, released their Teleport service for beta testing in April.  Teleport’s main purpose is to allow users to circumvent geographically restricted content, such as that from Netflix or Hulu, by “teleporting” their internet connections so that they seem to be coming from somewhere else (like the US).  Although other services such as StrongVPN do the same thing, Teleport uses MyRepublic’s fibre broadband, which the company assures provides a faster connection than other networks such as SingTel or StarHub.

Vanessa Tan writes that MyRepublic is making Teleport as user friendly as possible:

“The company also hopes to make setup of…Teleport easy for customers. It is not required of users to have additional home networking configurations or technical knowledge, as the activation of the add-on services will be configured on MyRepublic’s end.”

MyRepublic offered its beta product trial free to the first 1,000 customers to register.  After the trial period is over, however, the service will cost what most will view as a worthwhile SG$5.  For users to access paid video services, though, the services’ subscription fees will be a separate and additional expenditure.

Full article at TechinAsia

DirecTV Lands Hulu Deal

directtv-huluAfter a fierce bidding war that included the likes of Yahoo!, AT&T, Verizon, and other major players, DirecTV seems to have come out on top.

A deal for the company to acquire online video provider Hulu is apparently in its final stages and is reported to be worth more than US$1B (SG$1.3B).  This comes after multiple offers two years ago from many of the same players, with the highest bid coming from Google at US$4B (SG$5.06B), which was ultimately rejected.  The new deal is expected to be finalized by the end of this month.

PandoDaily’s Michael Carney says DirecTV is the best fit for Hulu for two reasons:

“First, DirecTV is one of a select few companies with the resources and wherewithal to absorb Hulu and retain or increase its value. Second, Hulu fills a gaping hole in DirecTV’s offering in a way that it would be hard pressed to achieve by other means.”

The “gaping hole” Carney refers to is DirecTV’s lack of any substantial online presence.  With this new acquisition, the company will finally be able to hold a candle to its competitors in the online forum, and perhaps much more. Hulu Plus topped 3 million paid subscribers at the end of 2012 and raked in US$695M (SG$879M) in revenues during that year.  Depending on how DirecTV uses their new acquisition, it could be looking at huge profits in the coming years.

Referenced from PandoDaily.