Rumor mill: Vudu a Wal-Mart target?

(Updated 1:35 p.m. ET) OTT video services provider Vudu is in "meaningful" acquisitions talks with a buyer, reports the Wall Street Journal's Peter Kafka, and the leading suspect is uber-retailer Wal-Mart, which has twice tried -- and failed -- to enter the VoD and video-by-mail market as recently as 2007 when it launched its ill-fated (and short-lived, it lasted less than a year) download service. Vudu reportedly has been on the block for a while, looking to be picked up by a firm with deep pockets.

A Vudu company spokesman declined comment on the report.

Vudu has raised more than $21 million from investors including Greylock Partners, Benchmark Capital, Arts Capital and others. Reports indicate the company has an asking price in the neighborhood of $50 million, which may be a bit more than the market thinks it's worth.Vudu has deals with more than 40 indies and every major studio; it offers some 3,000 movies in HD/HDX and 16,000 titles overall for rent and sale.

Vudu has had a busy 2010 already, announcing it:

  • Made deals with LG, Mitsubishi, Samsung, SANYO, Sharp, Toshiba and Vizio, to ship on HDTVs and BDPs;
  • Launched a new platform for delivery of streaming Internet services to home televisions including Web widgets, video on demand, streaming music, photo browsing, social networking and more. The platform, Vudu Apps, was developed out of the cloud-based UI used in the Vudu Streaming Movie Service.  More than 100 apps are available in Vudu Apps. 

For more:
- see this blog post

Related articles:
Vudu now available on LG HDTVs  
VUDU and Brightcove bring ad-supported video to set-top boxes
Entone, VUDU team for OTT over IPTV

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