DISNEY Nabs Full Operational Control of HULU, Effective Immediately

Hulu
Credit: Hulu

The Walt Disney Company has secured "full operational control of Hulu after finalizing a deal with the streaming service's other primary shareholder, Comcast. First reported by Variety, under this deal NBC Universal (and its parent company, Comcast) will continue to own a 30% stake (to Disney's 60%) but terms have been reached for a a potential sale of that 30% beginning in January 2024.

As part of the deal, Comcast has extended Hulu's license on current NBCUniveral content on the streaming service. It can, however, switch any exclusive deals to non-exclusive within one year, and can cancel most of its content-licensing agreements with Hulu by 2022. Comcast has previously announced plans for their own free, ad-supported streaming service to launch in 2020.

For Disney, Comcast has agreed to distribute Hulu on its Xfinity X1 platform, and has extended the Hulu Live carriage agreements for NBCUniversal channels for an unspecified duration.

This deal came into play when Disney's original 30% ownership stake was doubled to 60% with the acquisition of 21st Century Fox - which itself owned 30%. In April, AT&T/Warner Media reached a deal to sell its 10% stake in Hulu back to the streaming company. However, that has not been finalized.

Hulu is currently the exclusive home to serveral comic book-based TV series including Marvel Television's Runaways and VIZ Media's One-Punch Man. Other Marvel-based shows in development are Ghost Rider, Helstrom, Hit-Monkey, Tigra & Dazzler Show, Howard the Duck, M.O.D.O.K. and The Offenders.

In addition to that Marvel content, Hulu is development TV series based on Sweet Tooth, Motor Girl, Old City Blues, and Woke.

Disney's own streaming service, Disney+, is scheduled to launch November 12.

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