Comcast Buying DreamWorks Animation for $3.8B as It Expands Its Reach
Patrick Moorhead, principal analyst at Moor Insights & Strategy, told eWEEK in an email reply that as cable companies and telecom carriers "move into the future, they need to be more than 'fat, dumb pipes.' Some companies are going after a commercial angle, becoming a cloud provider like Deutsche Telekom, and others, like Comcast are connecting their pipes with content." It remains to be seen if this is the right approach, wrote Moorhead. "On the surface it looks good, but content and pipes don't always mesh well. Anyone remember AOL and Time Warner?" Comcast has made other strides to go after the streaming video market, including the launch of its Comcast Stream online video streaming service for $15 per month. The service, which was announced last July, provides customers with a package of live television stations, all over their cable Internet connections. The Stream service works without a television or cable box, instead bringing a live video stream directly to a customer's in-home devices over the Internet via a cable modem. Stream is an Internet-only service and is not connected to Comcast's cable television services, which remain separate. Among the channels included in Stream are network programming from ABC, CBS, The CW, Fox, NBC, PBS, Telemundo, Univision, HBO and local channels where a subscriber lives. Under the acquisition deal from Comcast, DreamWorks Animation stockholders will receive $41 in cash for each share of DreamWorks Animation common stock. The sale has already been approved by the boards of directors of DreamWorks Animation and Comcast, but is subject to antitrust approvals in the United States and abroad and other conditions.
Comcast Cable is one of the nation's largest video and high-speed Internet providers, with about 22.3 million cable video customers and about 23.3 million Internet customers in 39 states. NBCUniversal owns Universal Pictures, entertainment and news cable networks, the NBC and Telemundo broadcast networks, local television station groups, television production operations and theme parks including Universal Orlando Resort.