Hulu Debates Possible Sale

by , Jun 22, 2011, 11:11 AM
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According to multiple reports, Yahoo -- or some other big company -- has approached Hulu about a possible takeover. "Hulu is weighing whether to sell itself ... its latest strategic crossroads as the fight over distributing TV content online intensifies," reports The Wall Street Journal, citing sources.

"On Tuesday afternoon, word of the unsolicited offer spread and was subsequently confirmed by people close to the company," Los Angeles Times writes. "It is not known whether the offer came from Yahoo or another entity."

"The unsolicited offer has prompted Hulu's board to consider its options, and the company is speaking to potential advisers," according to The New York Times, citing sources. "It may contact potential buyers, including other media companies and private-equity firms that have wanted the chance to buy the service."

 A single source tells TechCrunch that Yahoo, at least, has nothing to do with the Hulu talks. "Yahoo hasn't had any meaningful conversations with Hulu about a buyout," it writes. However, "The source added that Hulu is actively looking for a buyer and has hired Morgan Stanley to represent them."

Aside from Yahoo, what Web giant would want Hulu? "The acquisition approach has not been made by any of the current equity holders," sources tell Reuters. (For the record, that includes News Corp, Walt Disney, Comcast Corp's NBC Universal and private equity firm Providence Equity Partners.) Either way, "Someone wants Hulu to be in play -- or at least the idea of a possible sale to be very public," as paidContent puts it.

"Although there has been interest in the company, it remains unclear whether its owners have any desire to sell," writes LAT. "Hulu has not taken any traditional steps associated with a sale such as retaining an investment bank to field offers. However, it is currently undergoing a restructuring that would give Chief Executive Jason Kilar and his executive team greater autonomy while imposing new rules on the availability of television content."

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