Sony’s Funimation Acquires Crunchyroll, AT&T’s Anime Streaming Service for $1.175 Billion
It’s official, AT&T has sold its anime streaming service Crunchyroll to Funimation, a Sony-owned anime streaming service for $1.175 billion.
With the acquisition, Sony has added Crunchyroll’s 90 million free members and three million paying subscribers across more than 200 countries and regions. Sony has also gained Crunchyroll’s vast library of over 1,000 anime titles.
“The Crunchyroll team has done an extraordinary job of not only growing the Crunchyroll brand but also building a passionate community of anime fans. Crunchyroll’s success is a direct result of the company’s culture and commitment to their fans,” said Tony Goncalves, Chief Revenue Officer, WarnerMedia.
As the anime world grows more and more popular, Crunchyroll has become a bigger platform. In July, the streaming service reported they hit three million paid subscribers globally, with over 70 million registered users garnered.
“We are excited to embark on this new journey. Crunchyroll has built a world-class brand with a passionate fan-base of over 3M subscribers, 50M social followers and 90M registered users. These amazing fans have helped to propel anime into a global phenomenon,” said Joanne Waage, general manager of Crunchyroll. “Combining the strength of the Crunchyroll brand and the expertise of our global team with Funimation is an exciting prospect and a win for the incredible art form of anime.”
“We are proud to bring Crunchyroll into the Sony family,” said Tony Vinciquerra, Chairman and CEO of Sony Pictures Entertainment. “Through Funimation and our terrific partners at Aniplex and Sony Music Entertainment Japan, we have a deep understanding of this global artform and are well-positioned to deliver outstanding content to audiences around the world.”
The service also announced eight new shows in February. They span the adventure-fantasy-historical fiction genres. These shows are produced with noted publishers, including Kodansha, and animation studios, such as MAPPA.
Crunchyroll was also leveraged as WarnerMedia was promoting HBO Max. Two weeks ahead of the May 27 launch, WarnerMedia announced HBO Max partnered with Crunchyroll to bring 17 titles to the platform at launch.
Subscribers were given access to titles such as “Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood,” “Re:ZERO -Starting Life in Another World” (director’s cut) and “Keep Your Hands off Eizouken,” alongside the Crunchyroll original series “In/Spectre.”
Crunchyroll is currently available for free with ads; ad-free subscriptions run $6.95/month or bundled with VRV for $9.99. The VRV bundle includes Crunchyroll, Rooster Teeth, Nick, Shudder, Boomerang, and Curiosity Stream.