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商业 - 科技

Hulu不卖了!

Dan Primack 2013年07月16日

据报道,Hulu最终收到了3份收购要约,收购价都在10亿美元左右。不过,共同拥有Hulu的几家大牌媒体公司选择对Hulu追加投资7.5亿美元,不再挂牌出售。分析人士称,Hulu的所有者可能是因为买家的追捧加强了对这项资产的信心。

    美国流媒体视频网站Hulu不再挂牌出售,几家大牌媒体股东决定维持各自股份,并增加7.5亿美元现金投资。

    Hulu股东21世纪福克斯(21st Century Fox)、NBC环球(NBCUniversal)和沃尔特迪士尼公司(The Walt Disney Co.)在一份声明中称,Hulu目前每个月拥有超过3,000万唯一访问者,提供来自400多家内容合作伙伴的视频服务。

    《华尔街日报》(Wall Street Journal)上周初报道称,Hulu收到了3项最终收购要约。一项来自DirecTV,其他两项均为联合出价要约:分别来自美国电话电报公司(AT&T)和切宁集团(Chernin Group),以及KKR集团(Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co.)和Guggenheim Digital Media公司。此前的寻购者还包括雅虎(Yahoo)、艺人经纪机构威廉•莫里斯奋进娱乐公司(William Morris Endeavor)和私募公司银湖资本(Silver Lake)。

    “我想,(Hulu股东们)几个月前还真想把Hulu卖给出价最高的买主,但随着他们收到更多的意向,他们开始给予Hulu更高的估值。”据熟悉此事进程的消息人士称。“有点像是他们被人夸得心花怒放,开始想留下Hulu。”

    这种感觉有点像是2011年,当时由于潜在买家担忧卖方将不再通过这个网站提供内容,Hulu流拍。这一次,所有的出价都附有非常明确的、与Hulu现有股东签订的内容许可协议,但这些协议有很多限制。这些限制使得最终出价者不多,并将价格限制在了10亿美元左右,而不是原本可能获得的13亿、14亿美元。

    新闻稿没有解释Hulu将如何运用7.50亿美元的新增投资,以及新战略合作伙伴关系是否已经开展。有传言称,Hulu可能为时代华纳有线(Time Warner Cable)等第三方有线电视推出白标平台,据称这是康卡斯特(Comcast)CEO布莱恩•罗伯茨正在推进的一项工作。另有传言称,Hulu可能会用资金收购更多的内容和注册用户(因为该公司正从广告支持模式转向类似流媒体公司Netflix的注册用户模式。)

    Hulu的原始四大股东之一、私募股权公司Providence Equity Partners去年秋天将其10%的股份卖给了福克斯、NBC和迪士尼,售价2亿美元。Providence起初的1亿美元投资获得了两倍的投资回报,也使得Hulu的估值达到了20亿美元,但这个估值并未被视为是拍卖的底价。(财富中文网)

    Hulu is no longer for sale, as the streaming video company's media owners have decided to maintain their shares and invest an additional $750 million in cash.

    In a statement, owners 21st Century Fox (NWS), NBCUniversal (CMCSA), and The Walt Disney Co. (DIS) said that Hulu now has more than 30 million monthly unique visitors for its service with videos from over 400 content partners.

    The Wall Street Journal had reported earlier this week that there had been three final acquisition offers for Hulu. One came from DirecTV (DTV), while the others were joint bids: one from AT&T (T) and Chernin Group, and another from Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. (KKR) and Guggenheim Digital Media. Earlier suitors had included Yahoo (YHOO), talent agency William Morris Endeavor, and private equity firm Silver Lake.

    "I think that [Hulu's owners] were genuinely interested in selling the company to the highest bidder a couple of months ago, but they began to value what they had more as they got more inbound interest," says a source familiar with the process. "It was kind of like they were flattered, and it made them begin to want to keep it for themselves."

    This entire experience is a bit of a rerun for Hulu, which also ran a failed auction process back in 2011 after prospective buyers worried that the sellers would no longer offer their content via the site. This time around the bids were attached to very specific content licensing agreements with Hulu's current owners, but they were fairly restrictive. Such limits kept the final bidding group fairly small and also may have kept the price at the $1 billion range rather than the $1.3 billion or $1.4 billion that it may otherwise have garnered.

    The press release does not explain what Hulu will do with its $750 million windfall or if new strategic partnerships are afoot. There had been talk that Hulu could launch a white-labeled platform for third-party cable companies like Time Warner Cable (TWC) -- something Comcast CEO Brian Roberts was said to be pushing -- while Hulu also could use money to acquire additional content and subscribers (as it moves from an ad-supported model toward a more Netflix-like subscription model).

    One of Hulu's original four owners -- private equity firm Providence Equity Partners -- last fall sold its 10% stake to Fox, NBC and Disney for $200 million. That $2 billion valuation had been set via a 2x liquidation preference as part of Providence's original $100 million investment and was not viewed as any sort of floor for the auction process.

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