In a development that comes like a bolt from the blue, popular streaming service HOOQ has filed for voluntary liquidation. The subscription-based streaming platform was owned by Sony Pictures Television, Warner Bros and Singapore’s Singtel, with Singtel having a 76.5% controlling stake in HOOQ. The streaming service had a lucrative partnership with Hotstar in India, besides being available through Vodafone and Airtel.
The streaming service that brought shows such as Arrow, The Flash and Supergirl, and movies such as Wonder Woman to Hotstar, was also credited with ramping up Hotstar’s premium English language content by bringing content of Warner Bros., Sony Pictures, Lionsgate and Miramax, among others, to the platform.
In a statement HOOQ shared with Techcrunch, it said, “Global and local content providers are increasingly going direct, the cost of content remains high, and emerging-market consumers’ willingness to pay has increased only gradually amid an increasing array of choices.”
“Because of these changes, a viable business model for an independent, OTT distribution platform has become increasingly challenged. As a result, Hooq has not been able to grow sufficiently to provide sustainable returns nor cover escalating content costs and the continuous operating costs of an independent OTT distribution platform.”
HOOQ was launched in 2015, and primarily serviced South Asian countries such as Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia, India and the Philippines. Its content library consisted of 10,000 movies and TV series, and it had a subscriber base of 80 million users.
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