Fandango Media LLC, a Comcast-owned ticketing company, has recently purchased Vudu, a content delivery and media technology company, from Walmart for an undisclosed sum.
NBCUniversal recently acquired Vudu to assist Fandango in expanding its digital reach. Fandango currently operates FandangoNOW, its digital marketplace, with monthly visitors of 60 million and movies & TV shows of more than 100,000, as of December 2019. Vudu and FandangoNOW will come under the digital network of NBCUniversal after the acquisition.
People with knowledge of the matter stated that the information regarding the purchase deal will be announced after its closure in the coming months. Currently, living room devices of more than 100 million are reportedly getting access to Vudu, with mobile app downloads of more than 14 million. The primary goal of the deal is to accelerate the expansion in the transactional space, which means, users can purchase and rent the available movies without a subscription.
Scaling Fandango’s business in the transactional space will enable it to compete against Amazon & Apple’s iTunes, rather than ad-supported and subscription-based streaming services like Tubi or Netflix, and Vudu can act as the key to achieving this goal. This can be attributed to its large, built-in audience, and a dedicated network of home video enthusiasts. This streaming service is known for using higher bit rates as compared to other competitors, and its dedication towards high streaming quality. By acquiring Vudu, the company can cater to the shifting consumer preferences towards streaming movies due to the global coronavirus pandemic, as well as studios that adopt digital retailers for some films.
Warner Bros., NBCUniversal, and Disney are some of these studios that have decided to completely forgo or shorten the theatrical window for various movies and lean into digital releases due to the current movie theaters shut down. These upcoming movies include Marvel films like Mulan and Black Widow as well as blockbusters like Wonder Woman 1984 and F9. Under the Vudu platform, the company will be able to reach a considerably wider audience.