The rise of online video services like Netflix has attracted the attention of a lot of major players. There already are a lot of competing services out there, such as Hulu, which is backed by big networks. These online services are now also into production of original content, they spend the same money and come up with the same quality as broadcast networks. AT&T wants a piece of the action as well. The company announced today that it is partnering with The Chernin Group, a media holding company, to acquire, launch and invest in new online video ventures.
The Chernin Group is led by a powerful figure from the entertainment industry, Peter Chernin. He has done stints at News Corp, 20th Century Fox as well as the Fox Broadcasting Company. The Group already has significant investments in Crunchyroll, Flipboard and Pandora.
Both companies have committed to $500 in funding for their new partnership, this includes contribution of The Chernin Group’s majority stake in anime-streaming service Crunchyroll.
With online video services making a lot of money by delivering content through networks built by companies like AT&T, it seems logical that they would want a bigger piece for themselves. AT&T Chief Strategy Officer John Stankey says that the company’s expertise in mobile, broadband and network infrastructure will play a pivotal role in the development and distribution of new online video ventures.