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Report: Quibi Reevaluating Company Strategy, Considers Possible Sale

Stephanie Sengwe

Quibi’s launch path has been a rough one and now it looks like the company is trying to patch up where they can. According to the Wall Street Journal, Quibi is reevaluating their company strategy and looking at the best ways to move forward.

One of the options on the table according to WSJ’s sources, is a possible sale. Other options include raising more funds or “going public through a merger with a special purpose acquisition company or SPAC—essentially a blank-check company that helps fund deals.”

A Quibi spokesperson told The Streamable, “Quibi has successfully launched a new business and pioneered a new form of storytelling and state-of-the-art platform. Meg and Jeffrey are committed to continuing to build the business in the way that gives the greatest experience for customers, greatest value for shareholders and greatest opportunity for employees. We do not comment on rumor or speculation.”

Quibi’s April 6 launch didn’t go as the company planned it would. 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.

Not only that, the company was in the middle of a patent infringement and misappropriation of trade secrets legal battle with Eko over the Turnstyle technology.

In addition to these issues, the app also did not performed 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.

Quibi claimed 3.5 million customers and 1.3 active users in May, while Sensor counted 2.9 million customers.
Despite the discrepancy, founder Jeffrey Katzenberg, who raised $1.8 billion for the streamer, along with his CEO Meg Whitman, was disappointed. “It’s not up to what we wanted. It’s not close to what we wanted.”

With the pandemic still raging and no clear solution in sight, the streamer later on added Airplay and Chromecast support. They have been rumored to add support for Fire TV and Roku, but they have yet to strike a deal with those two platforms.