For the second time, Hulu's owners conducted a lengthy auction process only to decide not to sell the online video site. On Friday, Walt Disney Co. (NYSE: DIS), 21st Century Fox and Comcast's (Nasdaq: CMCSA) NBCUniversal unit said they would together put $750 million in to the site to help it grow. Bids from potential acquirers were said to have been in the range of $1 billion.
DirecTV (Nasdaq: DTV), Time Warner Cable (NYSE: TWC) and AT&T (NYSE: T) were all said to have been interested in the site.
"We had meaningful conversations with a number of potential partners and buyers, each with impressive plans and offers to match," Fox President Chase Carey said in a statement.
Ultimately, the companies decided to hold on to and invest in the asset themselves, Carey said. Comcast is a silent partner in the joint venture that owns Hulu because of conditions the federal government placed on its acquisition of NBCUniversal.
The announcement marks the fourth time Hulu's owners have considered, then backed away from, selling the site. Hulu owners reportedly twice mulled the idea of an initial public offering before ultimately dropping those plans. An earlier auction in 2011 also ended without a buyer.
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