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Roku Reportedly in Advanced Talks to Buy Quibi's Catalog

"The Most Dangerous Game" on Quibi.
"The Most Dangerous Game" on Quibi. (Image credit: Quibi)

Roku is in advanced talks to acquire Quibi’s original series catalog, the Wall Street Journal reports.  

Jeffrey Katzenberg’s startup shuttered in October, the $4.99-a-month streaming service built for mobile devices and privately funded with nearly $1.8 billion succumbing just six months after launch. 

Also read: Quibi Lament: How Did Jeffrey Katzenberg Not Succeed with Record High Pandemic Audience Levels and $1.8 Billion?

WSJ didn’t report a ballpark sales price. 

Roku saw advertising sales on its platform spike another 78% in the third quarter to $319 million. Usage of the ad-supported Roku Channel, which Roku launched just over three years ago, has been instrumental in that growth. 

Quibi’s catalog of series, chopped up into 10-minute episodes, includes a reboot of Comedy Central’s Reno 911, as well as an iteration of the Richard Cornell classic, The Most Dangerous Game, starring starring Liam Hemsworth. Both series were Emmy nominated for best short-form comedy or drama. 

Licensing content for Roku Channel has been challenging for Roku. It was reportedly a sticking point in the company’s negotiations to support Comcast’s Peacock and WarnerMedia’s HBO Max last year

As for Quibi, it carved out a number of sweetheart deals for its legion of high-profile makers, allowing them to maintain ownership of their shows after finite runs on the platform.

Quibi shut down with around $750 million in cash still left in the bank.