On the Call: DirecTV CEO eyes Hulu

On the Call: DirecTV CEO Michael White discusses possibly bidding for Hulu

Associated Press

DirecTV Chief Executive Michael White confirmed Thursday that the satellite TV company was among many potential bidders for online video service Hulu.Buying the company from its parents -- The Walt Disney Co., News Corp., Comcast Corp. and Providence Equity Partners -- could bolster DirecTV's efforts to allow its customers to watch their video packages on mobile devices.But he said DirecTV wasn't committed to a deal and said a deciding factor would be the kinds of programming agreements that come with any deal.Other interested bidders have included Google Inc., Yahoo Inc. and Apple Inc.QUESTION: You mentioned that you spent some time on DirecTV's long-term strategy. So does entering into content via Hulu come into these conversations at all?RESPONSE: (CEO Michael White) I don't want to get into specific comments on an acquisition process, but I think suffice it to say we have consistently said that we want to make sure that we can make DirecTV available anytime and anywhere our customers want it. The Hulu software has some nice aspects to it but you also have to kind of form a judgment about its business model and what you think that business model can generate. So, you know, we look at a lot of things here. And we'll see as we go through that process where we come out.What we're looking for is, is there something there that would enable us to accelerate our `TV Everywhere,' but obviously I'd say it's critically dependent on the distribution relationships that it has in the contracts that underpin that, so I think there's still more for us to learn and we really haven't made a final judgment on it. I don't think it's kind of something we have to have frankly. I think it's an interesting idea and we are looking at it but, I mean, we are doing IP (Internet Protocol) -- I mean our NFL Sunday Ticketing To Go product is an IP product. I mean, we know how to do the hybrid kind of -- if you think of it using the satellite and then using the Internet, kind of cloud, Internet and then IP. So, I mean, our technical guys are quite comfortable with that world, you know, so I'm sure one way or the other we'll be able to do what we need to do for `TV Everywhere' but it's an interesting opportunity so we're taking a look at it.

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