Disney buys major streaming company for $900 million to boost Disney+
The Walt Disney Company has acquired a major streaming company for $900 million to boost its own streaming platform, Disney+.
Amidst a series of changes across The Walt Disney Company, including various price increases for Disney Parks admissions and experiences, fluctuating prices for Disney’s Genie+ system, and most recently, the return of Disney CEO Robert Iger, the company has paid $900 million to buy a major streaming technology company to boost Disney+, the company’s streaming platform.
The Walt Disney Company reportedly paid $900 million to Major League Baseball for the remaining 15% stake in BAMTech, a streaming video technology company that operates Disney+. This eye-catching financial move comes just days before Disney+ is set to launch its ad-supported subscription tier and ahead of planned corporate restructuring under reinstated CEO Bob Iger.
MLB developed BAMTech as an in-house advanced media business before later becoming an independent company in 2015. The Walt Disney Company initially bought a 33% stake in 2016 and then increased its position to 75% after announcing its Disney+ plans in 2017, getting majority ownership in BAMTech. The Walt Disney Company then bought out a 10% stake from the National Hockey League and has now bought the remaining 15%, previously owned by MLB, to gain full ownership of the company.
Taking into account all the financial moves involved in BAMTech’s transition, The Walt Disney Company paid $3.48 billion to gain full ownership of the streaming technology company, according to Forbes.
BAMTech, which was officially renamed “Disney Media & Entertainment Distribution” when Disney gained majority ownership of the company, has the following to say about the company:
Disney Media & Entertainment Distribution (DMED) brings together the company’s best product, technology and commercialization teams in one global organization. DMED is responsible for the P&L administration and all distribution, network and engineering operations, sales, advertising, data and certain key technology functions worldwide for the Company’s content engines. DMED also manages the operation of the company’s streaming services including Disney+, Hulu, ESPN+ and Disney+ Hotstar; and domestic broadcast and cable television networks.
As mentioned above, this recent acquisition comes in preparation for the launch of the ad-based subscription tier of Disney+, which will bring a number of changes to the platform Hulu and ESPN+, Disney’s sister platforms. You can click here to read more about the changes coming to Disney+, Hulu and ESPN+.
Are you currently a Disney+ subscriber? What do you think of the changes to the platform’s pricing? Let us know in the comments below!