Comcast mulls sale of Hulu stake to Disney

Comcast is in talks to sell its 30% stake in Hulu to Disney, a move which would give Disney full control of the streaming service.

According to a report by CNBC, Comcast is weighing the pros and cons of doing a deal now rather than later.

The two companies are the last remaining owners of a company that was originally founded as a joint venture between several media giants.

Last week, Hulu bought back a 9.5% stake in itself from Time-Warner owner AT&T, in a deal that values Hulu at $15 billion. That 9.5% stake will be split between Disney and Comcast, unless Disney consolidates the entire company.

Disney currently owns a 60% stake in the business, having acquired 21st Century Fox’s 30% stake in a deal which closed last month. Disney is preparing to launch its own streaming service, Disney+, in the autumn.

Hulu has 25 million subscribers, less than half of Netflix’s 58 million U.S. customers.

Comcast may want to take the cash from a sale to pay down debt from its $39 billion acquisition of Sky.

AT&T sold WarnerMedia’s stake in Hulu to help pay down its debt.

Hulu’s losses have increased with its investment in technology and content. In 2018, Hulu lost around $1.5 billion, up from $920 million a year earlier.

 

Tags: Comcast, Disney, Hulu

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