A lot of people, including myself, have been expecting Netflix to make a play for the Starz cable network, and their excellent access to new and premium films that Netflix subscribers used to enjoy until last year. So we were all surprised that instead of grabbing the cable network, they decided to snatch away the Disney first-run contract from the network instead. Home Media Magazine has Liberty Media CEO Gregory Maffei’s take on the matter:
Indeed, the CEO said there could be a credible argument that Netflix should acquire Starz Entertainment, which is a principle source of content distribution to multichannel video distributors via 17 premium channels, including the flagship Starz and Encore brands with approximately 20.8 million and 34.3 million subscribers, respectively.
“You could make a case Netflix needs Starz’ cash flow,” Maffai said. “And Netflix would benefit from being able to distribute Starz Originals programming more broadly.”
He added that Netflix could have fared better economically during the next four years had it acquired Starz, which included rights to Disney and Sony Pictures movies, in addition to Starz Originals programming such as “Camelot,” “Magic City” and “Spartacus,” among others.
I would agree with him wholeheartedly, but I don’t think that a Starz/Netflix merger or partnership is out of the question in the slightest. In fact, if anything, it seems like the hand is being very publicly outstretched. Starz’s new subscription partner, Blockbuster Online, is going under, and Netflix has new guns like Redbox starting to horn in on their territory, tied to popular cable services that can directly undermine them by saving people money when bundled with their cable subscriptions. Netflix needs content, and they need security, and those Starz subscriptions could go a long way to making sure the bucks keep rolling, and people stay around for the long haul.
Via: [Home Media Magazine]