In what may be a means to better position itself from Netflix and other popular VOD services, Hulu may be selling a stake to Time Warner that, according to The Wall Street Journal, will raise the value of Hulu upwards to an astonishing $6 billion. This, of course, is merely speculation and rumored sources for now, but if this rumor proves to be true, Time Warner will own a share alongside other massive owners such as Disney, Comcast, and Fox. However, if Time Warner does get a stake then that would mean Comcast, Disney, and Fox will only receive 25% stake of Hulu instead of the once 33% they originally owned.
This won’t mark the first time Hulu potentially sold a stake to Time Warner as a few years ago, a deal was rumored to be between Time Warner, DirecTV, along with interest from Apple to bid for the Hulu service. However, the deal was shut down with Hulu instead receiving $750 million from its owners. Now that the deal seems to be back up with Time Warner making a possible new candidate for a Hulu stake once again, this could allow the service to have a better footing when competing for viewers. There have been reports that Hulu contains around 9 million subscribers at the moment whereas Netflix holds over 40 million subscribers within the United States, if accurate, Hulu will have a long ways to go before they are able to catch up and surpass Netflix. With potentially a new library of content becoming available through Time Warner, Hulu may seem more desirable for viewers when choosing for a streaming VOD service.
Time Warner could bring TNT, TBS, Cartoon Network, and HBO into Hulu through this deal while the service has also been moving towards producing original content as well for viewers to enjoy. These are the expectations we can hold as viewers of Hulu though it’s not a done deal. Right now the deal is tightlipped with neither Hulu nor Time Warner commenting on the matter. Regardless, it would be interesting to see just how well Hulu does against an already established streaming giant Netflix if the deal does go through. In the meantime, we’ll have to wait and see if Time Warner does become an owner for Hulu.