Hulu’s two corporate owners, Disney and Comcast, have struck a deal that will give Disney 100% operational control of the streaming service.
Comcast will relinquish its operational control of Hulu immediately, in exchange for a “put/call” agreement on Comcast’s 33% equity stake and a new deal for Hulu to carry NBCU programming.
Starting in early 2024, the put/call deal means either Comcast or Disney can require Comcast’s stake to be sold to Disney at fair market value. The sale price will be determined by an independent expert, but Disney is guaranteed a minimum total equity value of $27.5 billion.
In addition, Hulu is expanding the availability of NBCU programming on its platforms and will bring an app to Comcast’s X1 platform.
NBCU will bring its shows to its own OTT platform next year and will have the option to terminate its programming deal with Hulu in three years.
Going forward, Comcast has the option to continue funding Hulu if it needs capital. If it chooses not to fund, its shares may be diluted, although there are limits on how much Comcast’s stake may be diluted.
The deal gives Disney 100% control of Hulu, enabling it to invest and change the service as it sees fit, without requiring consent from Comcast.