The Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS) will assume full control of Hulu from Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ: CMCSA), effective immediately. Comcast has the option to sell its 33% stake in Hulu to Disney as early as 2024 at a valuation of at least $27.5 billion. As per the agreement, Comcast is guaranteed a payment of at least $5.8 billion.
Both companies have agreed to fund Hulu’s buyout of AT&T’s (NYSE: T) 9.5% stake which took place last month. Comcast has also agreed to extend the license for NBCUniversal live channels and content on Hulu until late 2024 and to distribute Hulu on its cable platform. NBCUniversal also has the option to end most of its content licensing agreements with Hulu in three years.
Disney will launch its streaming service, Disney +, at the end of this year while NBCUniversal plans to launch its own OTT service next spring. NBCUniversal will have the right to provide its content, which is currently exclusive on Hulu, on its own service at the time.
This deal gives Disney a huge advantage over its competitors in terms of the content and services it owns as the competition in the streaming service space heats up.
Last week, Disney reported its second-quarter 2019 earnings results, surpassing market expectations on revenue and earnings.
Disney’s shares were up 1.6% in afternoon trade on Tuesday.