Advanced Television

Netflix an acquisition target?

October 20, 2014

Investment bankers Mediatech Capital Partners (MCP) believe that Netflix is now firmly a potential acquisition target. Porter Bibb, MCP’s managing partner, speaking on Bloomberg TV, told viewers that Netflix’s 50 million-plus subscribers – and growing – might put financial pressures on Reed Hastings, Netflix’s founder.

“Netflix [share price fell] but it is still very, very vital. It has 50 million subscribers and I think it is an acquisition target. I would not be shocked if Alibaba or Yahoo stepped up and instantly bought it,” said Bibb.

Chinese e-commerce site Alibaba is investing heavily in US-based technology companies. Last week it paid $50 million with Peel Technologies which has developed a range of remote applications for television. Of course, buying Netflix is likely to cost considerably more.

Asked whether Hastings would have much choice in where Netflix ended up, Bibb said Hastings may not have a choice given the “burgeoning liability on its balance sheets that is putting pressure on the company”.

Added to this financial burden is the cash going into original, high quality exclusive content.

Bibb has a long history as a senior investment figure, and MCP is active in print and broadcast media.

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