Disney will soon own a 60% stake in video-streaming service Hulu, thanks to its buyout of 21st Century Fox. That will give the company a bigger influence over Hulu’s strategy, including global expansion – which could have an impact for music-streaming service Spotify.
“After the deal closes and after we have the 60% ownership, we’ll meet with the Hulu management team and the board and discuss what the opportunities are in terms of both global growth and investing more in content,” Disney boss Bob Iger told analysts in the company’s quarterly earnings call last week. “That’s something that we have to do after the deal closes.”
In the US, Spotify and Hulu are partners, with bundled subscription offers for students and regular subscribers alike. “We’re very encouraged by the early results on both launches, both the Hulu student plan and now the Hulu standalone plan,” Spotify CEO Daniel Ek told analysts in July. “This is a huge part of what we’re doing, which is trying to find ways to bring more value to our members on the subscriber base.”
Hulu expanding globally could enable Spotify to follow suit with its music/video bundles – and that could be strategically important if and when Apple and Google follow Amazon (with Prime) down the road of unified entertainment bundles in the future.