Hugely successful US television streaming service Hulu has abandoned plans to launch in the UK according to the Telegraph. The broadsheet reports Hulu was unable to get “any traction in the British TV market” and the “market does not match their business expectations”.
“Hulu’s talks with ITV have come to a halt because the broadcaster wants to focus on growing its own catch up service – ITV Player and not syndicate its content out to a third party at the moment," the paper quotes a "senior TV executive who has been close to the negotiations" as saying. "Conversations with Channel 4 and Five have also not come to any fruition because Hulu wants to sell the advertising inventory around both broadcasters’ content – like it does with US content - and this is not something either broadcaster is willing to concede ON. Hulu has told several people at the British broadcasters that it has been forced to abandon its UK expansion plans after failing to sign any content deals."
Officially Hulu has declined to comment on the deal, though the Telegraph says a source close to company (handy all these 'close' people, hint: it's normally a press byword for a person at the company speaking under agreement of anonymity) as saying "it remains hopeful that it can have a UK presence in the future – when the broadcasters realise they need to be more flexible with their business models."
All of which leaves us rather frustrated since Hulu seems to be missing the point entirely. We don't give a flying fig about UK content. We have that by the bucket load through BBC iPlayer, ITV Player, Sky Player, 4oD and so forth. What we want is Hulu to bring all its existing tasty US licensing to the UK so we don't have to wait three years to see a new season of House, Dexter or even sodding Glee...
Wakey, wakey Hulu. Make it happen.