Hulu Bidding Deadline Extends A Week In Hopes Of A $1 Billion Offer

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Bids for the streaming video service Hulu were due Friday morning, but the company recently announced that it would extend its bidding for another week. The NY Post reports that the deadline extension has been made in hopes that it will give DirecTV, who is expected to submit a bid of $1 billion, more time to sort its finances and make an official offer.

A source told the Post,
“There are really just three main bidders left: DirecTV, Chernin and Guggenheim,” adding that Hulu “pushed back the deadline because DirecTV isn’t ready.”

The Post also revealed that KKR and Yahoo! are expected to drop out of the bidding, with low offers between $600-$800 million.

Time Warner has also placed a bid for Hulu, currently owned by News Corp, Walt Disney, and Comcast’s NBC. According to the New York Times, Time Warner, if it acquired Hulu, would use it to create “’TV everywhere’ hub, in which subscribers could have access to network and cable shows on demand.”

In the last three-month period, Hulu reached a milestone by streaming one billion videos. In 2012, the video-streaming service profited $695 million and had four million paying users for its subscriber service, Hulu Plus. It also features an ad-supported version for non-paying viewers.

Concerned about the future for Hulu if a major cable company buys it, a handful of employees have chosen to resign, reports the  Times, believing that a major brand could destroy the culture of the current Internet-based Hulu.

BTIG analyst Richard Greenfield wrote a report stating that it wouldn’t be in the best interest of Disney and News. Corp to sell to the highest bidder. “The more we think about the long-term implications of selling Hulu, the more we believe it would be a mistake for the content/programming based owners to sell to an existing [pay TV operator],” he wrote. Instead, he believes News. Corp or Disney should buy out the other two partners to “build a robust online video business.”