It seems that the first stage of the Hulu sale is due to come to an end next week with all potential buyers expected to turn in their initial bids by the end of the week. While it isn’t known who the final companies submitting bids will be, it is expected that the number will be at least $1.5 billion to even be considered.
We’ve been hearing a lot of names floated about since this whole process started back in late June; Amazon, Apple, Google, Microsoft and Yahoo were just a few of the names that got thrown around as potential buyers. Each has a strong list of pros and cons as to why Hulu would be a good fit for them, but it remains to be seen who was even really in the running as none of these names have yet to be confirmed.
What’s intriguing is how Hulu has continued to improve itself through out the process. First there was a rumor of a new service tier that has yet to be confirmed, but the expansion into Japan by the end of the year is definite. Add in the launch of their own original content and it has been a busy summer for the streaming video service even without the potential sale to an unknown buyer. Of course, it doesn’t hurt that everything they’ve done also makes them look that much more tantalizing. It’s almost like a turn-key business for a company that was looking to get into streaming video as you get some exciting licensing deals, original content, international expansion plans and what has almost become a household name. Honestly, at $1.5 billion, Hulu almost seems like a bargain deal to me, throw in a free toaster and I’m sold!
As a frequent user of Hulu Plus myself, I’m hopefully that which ever company ends up picking it up, they continue on the same track and don’t end up making it worse. While I have not always been 100% thrilled with the service, it’s getting consistently better, the last thing I want to see it do is take a step backwards.
Who would you like to see end up owning Hulu?