The long-running saga regarding whether or not Hulu will sell themselves looks to be nearing its climax, with three bidders for the streaming site noted as having put official offers on the table to co-owners News Corp. and Disney.
The interested parties are noted as service provider AT&T working alongside the Chernin Group, DirecTV, and Guggenheim Digital Media alongside private equity firm KKR & CO, all of which are recognised as having placed bids of ‘over $1 billion’.
The companies that have reached this stage of the process were reported by ‘people close to the matter’, with further rumours suggesting that once the Hulu-set deadline for bid finalisation is passed, a deal with the triumphant buyers could be completed within ‘a week or two’.
With the decision soon to be made by the site’s executives, and one that presumably will not fall through like the failed attempts to offload the service in 2011, the prize at stake for the new owners will be the second-biggest video streaming site in the USA (alongside a sizeable presence in the Japanese market) that currently carries annual revenue of $700m, gained from an estimated 4 million subscribers (at rates of $7.99 a month) and selling advertising that airs to its many more non-paying viewers.
The price tags being touted are said to be confirmation that all three parties are deadly serious of taking on and managing Hulu, and with $1b are more than likely to treat their new property with a level of interest that News Corp. and Disney are looking to do without, instead seeking to cashing in on their shares of the site after disagreements with eachother on how to run the platform. Unless it is the single solo party DirecTV who win the bid, will the new owners manage to co-operate more harmoniously in taking Hulu forward than previous regimes managed?