Earlier today, HBO took to Twitter to announce that they entered a content disribution agreement with Crunchyroll. In their announcement, HBO announced that Crunchyroll will partner with the network to serve a curated selection of anime via the HBO Max app, which will rotate on a quarterly basis.
As of press time, no further details have been announced.
HBO Max is an upcoming video-on-demand app that will launch in May 2020. The app will draw content from WarnerMedia partners, in addition to third parties when it debuts. WarnerMedia first announced the app in October 2018, with an initial launch period of late 2019. The app has since been delayed.
WarnerMedia, a subdivision of AT&T, owns HBO and Crunchyroll parent Otter Media. In March, WarnerMedia reorganized its operations, Otter under their “Global Kids & Young Adults” division.
Crunchyroll has been in operation since 2007. The service managed to raise $4.05 million in its first funding round, in 2008. Shortly after this, the company started picking up the streaming rights for shows.
The company was acquired by the Chernin Group, who purchased a majority share in the company in 2013. In October 2015, Crunchyroll partnered with Sumitomo to produce original anime content.
In 2016, Crunchyroll entered a landmark distribution deal with Funimation, which saw the two platforms sharing their libraries.
In 2017, Sumitomo and The Chernin Group entered a strategic partnership to “expand their holdings in the media and entertainment industry, while gaining a foothold in the global entertainment business landscape.”
On August 7, AT&T announced that they acquired Crunchyroll parent company Otter Media from The Chernin Group. The telecom bought Chernin’s controlling stake in Otter, bringing it under the company’s umbrella. In addition to Crunchyroll, Otter owns Ellation, VRV, Fullscreen, and Rooster Teeth.
In October 2017, we reported that Funimation was officially purchased by Sony Pictures Television. The deal, which was valued at $143 million, saw Sony purchase 95% of Funimation’s shares, giving the company a $150 million valuation overall. The company is now a part of Sony Pictures Television’s direct-to-consumer unit, which is helmed by Eric Berger. The unit also contains Sony’s Crackle, Film1 and Animax services.
Crunchyroll currently serves an audience of more than 45 million users, with more than two million paying subscribers.
Source: Twitter (hbomax)