Disney is launching its own standalone streaming service next year, but it does not mean that the company gives up on another prominent streaming platform – Hulu.
Disney CEO Bob Iger took a position on questions about Hulus's future under Disney's latest investor earnings and he noted plans to expand internationally while building up Hulus's original content slate. The company could see a much larger share in Hulu after the company's acquisition of Fox. Iger told investors that the company has no plans to abandon the ship, and it wants to expand Hulu's presence as a flowing service.
"Given Hulus's success as far as subscriber growth and relative brand strength and other issues like demographics are concerned, we believe there is an opportunity to increase investment in Hulu, especially on the programming side," says Iger.
Part of the expansion plans means that Hulu is available in international markets. Hulu's biggest competitor, Netflix, has grown tremendously thanks to its international market, while domestic growth has fallen significantly in the last quarter. Iger plans to offer Hulu content to an international audience and build on FX and Fox series is a method of trying to increase subscriber numbers significantly. It is unclear whether Hulu will follow Netflix's footsteps and invest in more foreign original series for its international subscribers, but Iger said that these talks will happen when the company takes majority control of Hulu.
"After the agreement closes and after we have 60 percent ownership we meet with the Hulu management and board and discuss what opportunities are global and invest more in content," says Iger. "But that's something we have to do when the deal closes."
If Disney plans to expand to European markets, the company must ensure that the content range matches new sanctions from European legislation. This means that more original content for international foreign countries may be on its way, but it will not happen any time. Disney's acquisition of Fox is expected to be completed in 2019.
Disney +, the company's standalone streaming service, will be launched with an assortment of high-profile original series and a backlog of Disney original content. Tom Hiddleston will reproduce his role as Loki for a stand-alone Marvel series, and Diego Luna returns to Star Wars universe for a stand alone Star Wars series. He joins Jon Favreau, who works on a separate stand alone Star Wars the series is called Mandalorianen.