Comcast and Disney have announced an agreement that will give Disney full control of Hulu starting today. It is part of a "put / call" agreement that will allow Disney or Comcast to force a sale of the remaining 33 percent of Comcast to Disney as of January 2024.
As part of that agreement, Comcast also promises that Hulu I can still bring content from NBCUniversal, as well as live NBCUniversal channels for Hulu's live TV service until "end of 2024". It's the kind of license agreement for content that Disney CEO Bob Iger hinted he would continue to exist under a Hulu owned by Disney. the month.
In addition, Comcast has the opportunity to present its programs at its next broadcast service that is currently licensed exclusively for Hulu after one year, in exchange for reducing the Hulu license fee for that content.
It's the kind of deal that makes sense for both sides of the equation: Disney has full control over Hulu today, instead of having to negotiate with Comcast about details or strategy of Steamroll. apart from its existing majority stake (which could lose goodwill for the licensing agreements that Disney wants to keep for all those NBC and Universal programs), and the option to order the sale of the final 33 percent that Comcast owns in 2024.  Meanwhile, Disney can begin to implement its plans for Hulu as part of the company's greatest broadcasting ambitions (including potential packages with Disney + and ESPN +) while maintaining all of Comcast's content.
Comcast earns a guaranteed minimum sale price for its participation in Hulu in 2024, no doubt in the hope that Bob Iger's golden touch will cause Disney-owned Hulu to increase its value (increasing capacity of Comcast if it is sold) and the freedom to put its exclusive Hulu show on its own broadcast platform next year when it is released.
The big question, of course, is: what will happen in 2024 when Comcast is free to extract all the content of NBCUniversal from Hulu? Will customers still want Hulu if it's just Disney content? (It's a portfolio that has certainly grown more than ever, thanks to Fox's recent agreement.)
Today's Comcast deal marks the final piece of the puzzle for Disney, which quickly took full control of Hulu in an amazing amount Short of time: at this time last year, Hulu was equitably owned by Disney, Fox and Comcast (with a 30 percent share each) along with a 10 percent minority stake owned by AT & T. After today, and Disney bought the participation of Fox, AT & T left the ship, and now Disney is about to own everything in a few years.
With the agreements that Disney has with AT & T and Comcast, it seems that Hulu's short-term future is assured. But it will be interesting to see what happens when those agreements expire and what Disney does when it faces the growing competition of the upcoming Comcast and AT & T broadcast services that will be available when they do.