That HBO/Netflix Partnership Probably Isn’t Coming Anytime Soon
Netflix released their Q2 earnings report yesterday, and it showed a return to profitability for the company. Both domestic and international streaming revenues were up, $26 million and $22 million, respectively.
In his letter to shareholders, CEO Reed Hastings made just the smallest hint that he’d be open to working something out with HBO, a company with which Netflix has definitely struggled.
Here’s what he said:
As for HBO, they continue to do great work with HBO GO, which is now available to most US households that subscribe to the premium service. While we compete for content and viewing time with HBO, it is also possible we will find opportunities to work together – just as we do with other networks. Consumers who are passionate about movies and TV shows are quite willing to subscribe to multiple services.
A subtle and brief mention of their company has apparently warranted a response from HBO. Spokesman Jeff Cusson told Reuters,
“We are not in discussions and have no plans to work with Netflix.”
As you may recall, HBO and Netflix have had their differences in the past. Earlier this year, HBO stopped selling their DVDs to Netflix at the discounted price. That means that Netflix had to pay retail to continue to offer HBO content to their subscribers.
Of course, past bitterness isn’t the only obstacle that a Netflix/HBO partnership would incur. HBO is expanding its HBO Go streaming service to more and more cable providers – and they seem to be perfectly happy with its status as a fairly exclusionary service.