Sony prepares to buy Crunchyroll, the largest anime collection, for almost a billion dollars
The Tokyo-based electronics giant is reportedly entering the final round of negotiations to buy Crunchyroll. According to Nikkei Asia, the acquisition could cost Sony more than 100 billion yen (about $ 957 million).
This comes just as Sony obtained the exclusive right to negotiate the popular anime streaming service. Until now, Sony has been licensing its anime, like the hit Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba, to other anime services. Adding Crunchyroll to its portfolio would put Sony in an even position to take on Netflix and Hulu.
Crunchyroll was founded in 2006 and now has 70 million free members and 3 million subscribers. AT&T became its parent company in 2018. Earlier this year, AT&T was rumored to be looking to sell Crunchyroll to Sony for, at the time, $ 1.5 billion.
Sony will pay nearly $ 1 billion to acquire Crunchyroll, the popular anime streaming service available through the Xbox and PlayStation consoles.
Sony invests in animation
The PlayStation maker is in final negotiations to seal the deal with a $ 957 million offer and is the only company in the race, Nikkei Asia reports.
Sony already owns the anime service Funanimation, which has one million subscribers, a transaction closed in 2017, when Sony Pictures Television acquired Funimation with a 95 percent controlling stake in the anime streaming service. Although this is dwarfed by Crunchyroll’s three million subscribers and a whopping 70 million free members.
Investing in animation right now makes sense – it’s relatively cheap to produce compared to live-action series (which currently have their own logistical problems with filming during the pandemic). Oh, and everyone is home watching streaming services.
That value is reflected in the nearly $ 1 billion worth of the company, though it’s still nowhere near the $ 7.5 billion Microsoft pays for Bethesda.