When it comes to the streaming game, there is a lot out there to choose from. It seems that nearly every company has its own streaming service, from HBO to Discovery, Paramount, MGM, Disney, and more. Disney launched its streaming platform, Disney+, in 2019 and immediately allowed subscribers to access hundreds of movies and television shows at the click of a button. Disney executives were also honest that they did not expect Disney+ to see a profit until 2024 — a goal they are still on target to meet.
Just months before Disney launched Disney+, they also bought a controlling stake in the platform Hulu. Disney had owned 33% of the company, but came to own another 33% when they purchased 21st Century Fox. One of the caveats that came with the purchase was that Comcast could require Disney to buy out Comcast’s share in 2024.
More than once, now-fired CEO Bob Chapek said that he wanted Disney to have full control of Hulu. However, Bob Chapek is not in charge anymore. Bob Iger took over as CEO in November 2022, and things are looking much different.
According to a new interview, Iger is considering the possibility of Disney selling Hulu. While NBC/Universal President Jeff Shell said that he expected Disney to pay top dollar for Hulu, Iger said he wasn’t going to say if Disney was a buyer or a seller. Per The Wrap:
But Iger raised the possibility that Hulu’s model is not part of Disney’s future.
“I’ve talked about general entertainment being undifferentiated.” That adult-focused market is an area where Iger said he is “concerned,” he said, “particularly in the competitive landscape that we’re operating in.”
The chief executive, who returned to Disney in November after his chosen successor, Bob Chapek, washed out, said the company will take a “very objective” look at Hulu before making any decisions.
Comcast and NBC/Universal have not responded to Iger’s comments. While their deal with Disney allows them to require Disney to purchase their 33% stake, Bob Iger is known for his dealmaking abilities. So things could change a lot before 2024 rolls around.