Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Netflix For Sale?

While no official word, the market is speculating that Netflix is for sale and that Disney is interested in acquiring them.  Of course, there is nothing yet to prove that Netflix is ready to be taken over or that Disney is ready to make an offer; still, it raises the question, is it a good fit or better for another company. 

Disney certainly is a content and distribution powerhouse with the capabilities to both produce and distribute great TV and film content.  With ESPN, they also bring a sports component to the mix and with the theme parks, another way to market and appeal to consumers.  But in building their brand, the House of Mouse has a particular identity. 

Netflix, on the other hand, streams content from everyone and creates unique content, some extremely graphic, that is not consistent with the Disney brand.  Netflix is Switzerland, not beholden on any particular cable network or studio, free to deliver content across all genres and all interests to all interested subscribers.  It seems to me that a Disney ownership has the potential to restrict that freedom and change Netflix to an identity that caters more to streaming Disney content.

Should Netflix be up for sale, I would suggest other companies could make a fit.  Apple and Amazon are the first two to come to mind.  Each would bring strong synergy to the mix and each could further grow the Netflix brand.  Others that might want to think about entering the streaming content fray include Microsoft, Intel, AT&T and Verizon.  For the longer term future of Netflix, I see these choices a better fit than Disney.  We will have to watch and see how serious this current rumor is.