Multinational media company Time Warner Inc. has taken a 10% stake in digital streaming service Hulu in a deal that will see the latter carry Time Warner nets on its forthcoming live-streaming service.
Time Warner’s investment in Hulu reflects its “commitment in supporting innovative digital services” and comes at a time when the cable company is facing growing competition from such streaming services as Netflix and Amazon Prime as younger audiences flock to online services.
Time Warner joins The Walt Disney Company, 21st Century Fox and Comcast as partners in the joint venture, and its portfolio of networks – including truTV, TBS, CNN and Turner Classic Movies – will be made available live and on-demand on Hulu’s forthcoming live-streaming service, which is scheduled to launch in early 2017.
The deal is worth a reported US$583 million, The Wall Street Journal reports, citing sources. At that price, Hulu will have a valuation of about US$5.8 billion.
Hulu, meanwhile, will continue offering its stable of ad-supported and ad-free SVOD programming to complement both the traditional pay-TV packages and its soon-to-launch streaming service. The digital streaming service most recently expanded its reach with the launch of its Hulu Documentary Films arm.
“This investment from Time Warner marks a major step for Hulu as we continue to redefine television for both consumers and advertisers,” said Hulu CEO Mike Hopkins in a statement. “Our two companies have long enjoyed a productive relationship – which includes the availability of past seasons of popular Turner shows on our current SVOD offerings – and we are very proud that Turner’s networks will be included in our planned live streaming service.”