Disney takes full operational control of Hulu

The Walt Disney Company has taken full operational control of Hulu, The Walt Disney Company and Comcast Corporation announced on Tuesday.

NBCUniversal, which is owned by Comcast, owns 33% of Hulu right now. The companies said in a press release that as early as January 2024, Comcast can require Disney to buy NBCUniversal's interest in Hulu, and Disney can require NBCUniversal to sell that stake to Disney for its fair market value at that future time. Disney has guaranteed a sale price that represents a minimum total equity value of $27.5 billion.

The deal also includes an agreement for both corporations to fund Hulu's recent purchase of AT&T Inc.'s 9.5% interest in Hulu.

Though the move will take place immediately, the press release does not explicitly mention any immediate changes for customers. As part of the deal, NBCUniversal will be allowed to end some of its content licensing agreements with Hulu a few years down the line.

The move means Disney will once again extend the reach of its streaming abilities. The news comes just a month after Disney announced that its upcoming streaming service for Disney content, Disney+, would become available in November. That service will offer the full Disney library, including Marvel, Pixar and Star Wars content.

Disney may bundle Hulu with Disney+ and its existing sports streaming service, ESPN+, executives said last week.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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