Roku Acquires Rights to Quibi Content for Less Than $100 Million

Roku has reached an agreement to acquire the rights to content from the now-defunct video streaming service Quibi (via The Wall Street Journal).

quibi

Roku reportedly paid less than $100 million to acquire the rights to Quibi's library of original content until 2022.

Quibi was a short-form video subscription service launched in April of last year. Executives believed that the service would be able to garner approximately 7.4 million subscribers during its first year, but it massively fell short with an estimated 400,000 to 500,000 subscribers. After courting a number of tech companies, including Apple, to see if it could be sold off, the service announced that it was shutting down in October 2020.

Roku is the biggest streaming media player in the United States, with a library of more than 40,000 movies and TV shows, and the acquisition of Quibi's content will offer a boost of more than 75 shows and documentaries.

Quibi's content will also be among the minority of exclusives on the platform, as the majority of Roku's programming is also viewable elsewhere. The acquisition is expected to give Roku more leverage in negotiations with advertisers, who may pay more to show their ads alongside shows that viewers are unable to see elsewhere.

Tags: Roku, Quibi

Top Rated Comments

tsa1 Avatar
18 months ago
They over paid lol
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
doboy Avatar
18 months ago
Flushing money down the drain.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
calstanford Avatar
18 months ago
What an incredible waste of money. No one watched the stuff before, no one will watch the same old stuff now
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
scottct1 Avatar
18 months ago
I didn't watch their content when I had a free account from T Mobile, why do they think I am going to watch now?
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
sw1tcher Avatar
18 months ago

Mindshare is different than market share, though. If I hear about a new hit streaming show, it’s on Disney+, Hulu, Netflix, Peacock, or AppleTV+. I’ve never once heard someone talk about some new show they’re getting into where they say, “Oh, it’s on The Roku Channel”. (Actually, this is the first I’m hearing of The Roku Channel.) While there do seem to be viewers for Roku’s service, they don’t seem to have the same name recognition for original content as the major streaming services.
The reason you've never heard anyone talk about a new show on the Roku Channel and "they don’t seem to have the same name recognition for original content as the major streaming services" is because Roku never had their own original content until now.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
sw1tcher Avatar
18 months ago

I kind of fell that Roku paid too much for these shows. Few wanted them when they were on Quibi - why would people want them now that they're elsewhere?

What an incredible waste of money. No one watched the stuff before, no one will watch the same old stuff now

Sounds like alot of money for content that nobody was really interested in.
You have to ask why Quibi failed though.

Was it the content or was it:

- The timing of the launch (April 2020)? That was around the height of the 1st wave of the coronavirus pandemic.

- The name of the service? What's a Quibi?

- The business model? You pay $5 per month to watch a few short videos and you still get served ads? Yes, their business model is similar to Hulu's ad supported version of which 70 percent of their subscribers are on ('https://variety.com/2019/digital/news/hulu-ad-supported-subscribers-70-percent-1203227954/'), but Hulu's got a lot more content (new, old, and originals) and they had 1st mover advantage. And if you took advantage of the Hulu Black Friday promos in 2018 ($$0.99/mo for 1 year), 2019 ($1.99/mo for 1 year), and 2020 ($1.99/mo for 1 year), Quibi is a poor value in comparison.

- Quibi had to acquire new subscribers from scratch and you had to watch the shorts on a small screen vs your big screen TV at home.

I don't believe the problem was the content; Quibi has several good shows ('https://editorial.rottentomatoes.com/guide/best-quibi-shows/').

Quibi managed to acquire "an estimated 400,000 to 500,000 subscribers."

Meanwhile, as of Q3 2020, Roku had 46 million active accounts ('https://ir.roku.com/static-files/2148e434-58e4-48e1-bd1c-926862e3c21b') and their Roku Channel reached 54 million U.S. households.

Roku's going to have a lot more people watching this content now. For Roku, this is an investment in their platform which, for their most recent quarter, grew revenue 78 percent year-over-year.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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