According to a report from The Wall Street Journal, Tubi, the free on-demand streaming service, could be the next one scooped up in the streaming space. The report says that Fox has “expressed interest” in the company and that a deal could be “valued north of $500 million.” The service claims over 20,000 titles, almost four-times the library of Netflix.
If a deal was to happen, it would be the largest acquisition of the free ad-supported streaming services. In January 2019, Viacom acquired Pluto TV for $240 million. Sony sold their free streaming service Crackle to Chicken Soup For the Soul Entertainment, who subsequently rebranded it Crackle Plus. In late December, there were reports that Comcast was in “advanced stages” of acquiring free streaming service Xumo, which offer on-demand and synthetic linear channels.
Tubi, which unlike Pluto TV and Xumo, does not offer linear channels, but instead offers free on-demand movies and TV shows. The company was reportedly looking to raise $150 million in a funding round late last year.
The service is the biggest of the free ad-supported streaming services with 25 million users and 163 million hours watched. In comparison, Pluto TV, announced they have 22 million users, with the hopes of reaching 30 million by the end of 2020. Crackle Plus reportedly has an audience of ~10 million active users. Last April, Xumo surpassed 5.5 million monthly actives, but has recently partnered with Redbox to white-label their streaming service.
Tubi has also expanded internationally — launching in Canada and Australia, with Mexico and UK coming later this year. The service also launched a kids vertical with the over 5,000 hours of content — with movies like How to Train Your Dragon and series like Sonic the Hedgehog, Strawberry Shortcake, Paddington Bear, and The Wiggles.