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Potential Transfer of Hulu Ownership from Comcast to Disney

NOTE: This article is 1 year old and may not include the most recent information.

In an interesting development within the media and streaming industry, Comcast CEO has expressed a strong likelihood that the company may sell its one-third stake in Hulu to Disney. This statement comes on the heels of Disney expressing its interest in such an acquisition.

The CEO of NBCUniversal parent, Comcast, made a statement at the MoffettNathanson TMT conference that it is “more likely than not” that the company will proceed with the sale of its Hulu stake to Disney. The announcement comes after recent comments from Disney’s CEO, Bob Iger, on their earnings call last week where he expressed renewed interest in general entertainment, aligning with the content platform that Hulu provides.

Comcast and Disney have been engaged in a series of negotiations over the past year regarding the future of Hulu. As the deadline approaches, both parties seem to be more in agreement on the proposed transaction. The deal is such that Comcast can offer its stake to Disney, or Disney can initiate the purchase, early next year.

The value of Hulu, as a major player in the domestic streaming market with over 55 million subscribers, is significant. It carries a wealth of content from Disney and Fox, making it an attractive asset. The Comcast CEO, recognizing Hulu’s value, speculated about the potential worth of this stake in a robust market. The contractual floor valuation for the stake stands at about $9 billion, but the hope is that it will be well above that figure.

The question then becomes, “What would a willing buyer pay in a robust auction?” As the Comcast CEO pointed out, this is somewhat of a hypothetical scenario since an asset like Hulu has never been up for sale. The value to any potential buyer, whether it be Disney, Comcast, or any other tech company, is the objective – to achieve one-third of that value for the stake.

As these discussions progress, it seems more certain that Disney could become the sole owner of Hulu. This potential transaction marks a significant moment in the media streaming industry, highlighting the ongoing consolidation and competition among major players.

However, it is essential to remember that until an official agreement is reached and announced, these remain speculations and predictions. As such, stakeholders and consumers should keep a close eye on the developments to understand the potential impacts fully.

Trevor Decker
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