Quibi’s Fate May Be Doomed As Katzenberg Reportedly Tried to Sell The Service’s Content
You know you’re headed for destruction when the captain of the ship has seemingly abandoned hope. Such is the case for Quibi. Since its launch in April, the short-form streaming service has met a slew of problems which haven’t let up.
Through it all, however, founder Jeffery Katzenberg as well as CEO Meg Whitman, have stood by the service.
Now, it seems as though Katzenberg may be conceding. According to The Information, Katzenberg recently tried to sell Quibi’s programming to companies such as NBCUniversal and Facebook to no avail. This followed several weeks of trying to get companies such as Apple, Facebook and WarnerMedia to buy the service as a whole.
Katzenberg has reportedly revealed to some that he may have to shut down the service altogether if it doesn’t score a buyer. Employees at the company seem to have also accepted their fate as key strategy meetings have been scraped, The Information reports.
The Wall Street Journal reports that Quibi has hired a restructuring firm to determine best path forward, one option is to shut down the company.
Just yesterday, The Streamable broke the news that Quibi hasquietly become available on Apple TV, Fire TV, and Android TV — moving away from their mobile-only model.
Quibi’s rough start may be attributed to several factors. Not only did the short-form streaming service launch right in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, but because people were forced to stay at home, it’s mobile-only viewing model became a point of contention for users.
In addition, the company was in the middle of a patent infringement and misappropriation of trade secrets legal battle with Eko over the Turnstyle technology.
On top of that, the app also did not perform well. According to data from analytics firm Sensor Tower, Quibi was the fourth ranked app based on number of downloads for iPhones at launch. However, that number tanked to 284 in June, well below Disney+, which was at 50 and HBO Max, which was at number 67, according to The Los Angeles Times.
In June, Quibi claimed to have garnered 3.5 million customers and 1.3 million active users; Sensor Tower counted 2.9 million customers, however.