Hulu has decided to stop trying to sell itself, Peter Kafka reports.
The company’s owners didn’t explain why they pulled themselves off the block, but the answer’s obvious: They couldn’t find anyone willing to pay their price.
And that’s understandable.
Because although Hulu has built a wonderful video product, the product is meaningless (and mostly valueless) without the content.
And given that most of the key content is provided by the company’s equity owners, the moment those owners sell their stakes, their incentive to keep sharing their content on reasonable terms evaporates.
And Hulu’s prospective buyers, presumably–which included Yahoo, Google, Amazon, and DISH Network–were smart enough to figure out what they would be left holding if they did pony up and pay Hulu’s price.
The next key question is whether Hulu’s awesome CEO Jason Kilar is staying. Because if he isn’t, the company may be hard-pressed to find someone with such a clear product vision who can stand working for so many competing interests.