Jason Kilar, CEO of Hulu, made good on his promise that his streaming video service would have 1 million paying customers before the end of the year. Speaking at a Goldman Sachs conference, Kilar also said Hulu is spending more than $375 million for content during 2011. Subscriptions to the premium Hulu Plus costs $7.99 a month, and Kilar said Hulu is on track to hit $500 million in revenue alone this year.
The status of Hulu’s potential sale remains in limbo even though bids reportedly in the neighborhood of $2 million have been received by its joint equity owners News Corp, The Walt Disney Co., Comcast Corp.’s NBCUniversal and private equity firm Providence Equity Partners. Companies making the bids include Google, Amazon, DirecTV Group and Dish Network, now that Yahoo! has been sidelined by management issues.
Several months ago Bob Iger, president and chief executive officer of The Walt Disney Company, said the owners were fully committed to selling Hulu. On Wednesday, News Corp. chief operating officer Chase Carey reiterated to Reuters that a potential sale was still being evaluated, a comment he previously made during News Corp.’s earnings call in August.
The other two owners have not shared their opinion. NBCUniversal is not involved in Hulu management decisions, however, as part of the regulatory restrictions attached to its takeover.
One of the major question marks hovering over negotiations regards what exactly a buyer would get, which is not an easy to determine in the complicated world of licensing and streaming rights. As CBS CEO Les Moonves said at a Paley Media Center event on Thursday, “What are they getting and how long are they getting it? Are they buying two years of programs for $2 billion? I don’t know. … I shouldn’t say more, I’ll get in trouble.” CBS does not license content to Hulu.
Reuters – http://tinyurl.com/3sw3dpj
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