Hulu claims more than half its viewers watch little to no linear TV

Disney now controls Hulu after setting a deal with Comcast, which still currently owns one third of the streaming service. (Hulu)

Hulu said that more than half of its viewers are either light- or non-viewers of linear TV, and that its cordless audience is growing, reaching 21 million cordless ad-supported viewers.

The streaming service is sharing these figures to illustrate the incremental ad campaign reach it can provide versus traditional TV. Hulu said that based on an average of multiple extended reach studies it conducted with Nielsen, 85% of viewers who saw a campaign on Hulu are considered light linear TV viewers.

Hulu also claimed that 53% of viewers who saw a campaign on Hulu never saw the campaign on TV. The company called out campaigns it ran for Kroger and Lexus, which Hulu said generated 82% and 72% incremental reach, respectively.


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In May, Peter Naylor, senior vice president and head of advertising sales at Hulu, said that his company counts 82 million overall viewers, and added that nearly 70% of those viewers are on Hulu’s $5.99-per-month ad-supported plan. According to Variety, that works out to 58 million, or an average of 2.9 viewers per Hulu account.

At a shareholder meeting in April, Disney forecast that Hulu will grow to between 40 million and 60 million subscribers (it’s currently at 28 million) and that Hulu, which has been a significant money loser for Disney and Comcast, is projected to see its operating losses peak this year at $1.5 billion, and then achieve profitability by 2023 or 2024.

Disney now controls Hulu after setting a deal with Comcast, which still currently owns one third of the streaming service. Under the terms of the deal, Comcast as early as 2024 can require Disney to buy its 33% stake in Hulu, and Disney can require Comcast to sell that stake at a fair market value. Disney is guaranteeing a minimum total equity value of Hulu at that time of $27.5 billion.

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