Saturday, December 09, 2017
EAT OR BE EATEN
The Hollywood studios have, by and large, been the victims - gobbled-up by the likes of Comcast (Universal), Sony (Columbia), Fox (20th Century Fox), Paramount (Viacom), Time Warner (Warner Bros. cum Verizon). Only Disney and MGM (privately owned) remain as intact old-line studios.
The war has raged within the digital domain as Amazon and Netflix maneuvered to take ownership of internet distribution of mass media content, particularly motion pictures. Not only distributing Hollywood produced content but producing their own high-quality content.
Given this scenario, Disney's only play was to eat or be eaten. My own prediction was that Disney would be purchased by Apple (that could pay cash for Disney) as they have long had close relations so that fit would be the least painful for Disney
It now appears that Disney has decided to 'eat' and what it wants to consume is a big hunk of the Fox media empire. Rumor has it that Disney will be offering Fox $74 billion for the 20th Century Fox film and TV studio, the FX Networks, National Geographic Channels, and 22 regional sports networks. Fox, it appears, wants out and views its assets as being at their peak value.
Disney is betting big that becoming significantly larger will one, prevent (or at least make very difficult) their own takeover, and two, become a much larger player in content production and distribution - the buzz word being 'scale'. Disney would be the one old-school studio with the muscle to battle the social media giants.
Only time will tell if Disney has made the right decision.
Stay in touch,