Hulu Employees Feel Abandoned Following Bob Iger’s Latest Comments

in Disney, Movies & TV

Disney Bundle, Hulu in question.

Credit: Disney

According to a recent report published by the Financial Times, employees and executives at The Walt Disney Company’s general entertainment streaming division felt slighted after recent comments made by CEO Bob Iger.

Bob Iger and Hulu

Related: Reportedly Replaced, Bob Iger to Address Disney’s Future

Ever since the acquisition of 21st Century Fox and all of the assets that came with the deal in March of 2019, The Walt Disney Company has seemingly had trouble integrating the streaming unit of Hulu within the culture of the rest of The Walt Disney Company.

Hulu, Disney’s general entertainment US domestic streaming arm, has 48 million subscribers nationwide. Since Disney acquired the majority operating rights to Hulu, Disney has successfully grown that subscriber base from 22.8 million subscribers in the first quarter of 2019. Hulu does, after all, in certain aspects, have a broader appeal to audiences than some of its more traditional entertainment, film, and television offerings.

Since the return of Walt Disney Company CEO Bob Iger, speculators on Wall Street have been asking themselves what the company should now do with Hulu. Based on reporting from the Financial Times, Hulu’s current ownership structure has a set timer on whether Disney will outright buy Hulu.

Hulu
Credit: Hulu

Related: CEO Bob Iger Publicly Admits Disney Parks May Have Raised Prices Too Much

Disney owns approximately two-thirds of the company, with Comcast owning the remainder of the stake. When Disney acquired the majority ownership stake in 2019, Comcast and Disney agreed that either side could force a transaction starting in January 2024. According to the report, Comcast can “put” the stake to Disney, or Disney can “call” the stake from Comcast.

Despite the messy ownership structure at the present moment, many Hulu executives have grown frustrated with the situation. Flames were even added to the fire when Disney CEO Bob Iger told CNBC that “everything is on the table” regarding Hulu.

Based on a report from FT, a former Hulu would say, “it was an affront; the takeaway was: He’s selling it.” In addition, another former employee would comment that Hulu was “absorbed inside the Disney blunt-force objected.”

Either way, at the present moment, The Walt Disney Company and Bob Iger have a big decision that they will need to make about the future direction of its streaming strategy. It will undoubtedly be interesting to see what Disney decides to do about Hulu in the future.

Do you think Disney should sell Hulu?

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