Recently FOX sold most of 21st Century FOX to Disney. This deal includes their 30% control of Hulu, giving Disney 60% of the streaming service. This month AT&T sold its 9.5% of Hulu back to Hulu. Back in late April, it was reported that Comcast and Disney are in talks sell Comcast’s 30% stake of Hulu to Disney, which would give Disney 90.5% control over Hulu with 9.50% owned by Hulu. Now Disney has confirmed that talks have happened.
Today during Disney’s 1st quarter earnings call the topic of a possible sale of Comcast shares of Hulu to Disney did come up. “There has been dialogue with Comcast about them possibly divesting their stake,” said Disney’s CEO Bob Iger. Disney did add that if a deal did happen there would be an ongoing relationship with Comcast and NBCUniversal.
Now, these talks are not a done deal just today Comcast’s CEO talked about the importance of Hulu to Comcast just a few weeks ago. “On Hulu, the relationship with NBC, it’s very much in everybody’s interest to maintain,” Comcast CEO Brian Roberts said Thursday during an interview on CNBC’s “Squawk Box.” “And we have no new news today on it, other than it’s really valuable. And we’re really glad we own a large piece of it.”
Comcast only recently got seats on the Hulu board. Now with Disney owning a 60% stake in Hulu, Comcast’s 30% stake is becoming mostly a formality with little control over the company. So keep your eye out for Comcast and Disney to come to a deal about Hulu shortly after Disney takes over FOX’s shares of Hulu.
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