Media tycoon Rupert Murdoch urged the media industry to come together to fight Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX) and Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZ), the two streaming juggernauts of the industry. Murdoch, speaking at the Wall Street Journal’s WSJ.D conference in Laguna Beach, California ,said that there is a need for a serious competitor to stand up to both companies.
Netflix success a concern for TV companies
Murdoch, who is the chairman of 21st century Fox, is also a partner in HULU, a Netflix competitor. Just last year, Hulu’s then CEO Jason Kilar left the company to establish his own start up Vessel, which is backed by Amazon’s Jeff Bezos. However, according to Murdoch, the companies are now working together, and everyone is one the same page according to him.
“As an industry, we need a competitor – a serious competitor – to Netflix and Amazon,” Murdoch said.
Netflix is headquartered in the United States, but is not just confined to the domestic boundaries and is also finding its ways in Latin America and Europe. There is no confirmation over the company’s Australian expansion, but it is expected in late 2015 or 2016. The online streaming service’s impressive growth comes from users switching from conventional pay television where Murdoch holds large interests.
The trend known as “cord cutting” has become the latest concern among the TV companies who think that “over the top” services that remove the traditional distribution mode are undermining the TV business model. Seeing Netflix rising to the new heights, other players such as Amazon Prime and Hulu have also established themselves in the industry.
Murdoch talked of his decisions that went wrong
Murdoch’s comments follow Time Warner’s announcement that it will launch an internet only version of HBO, one of the highest viewed cable channels that also broadcasts Game of Thrones, Girls and True Detective.
While speaking on the panel “Best Won and Lost,” Murdoch also talked about his failed attempt to take over Time Warner. He said that his company was in need of more critical mass and content, and they thought that it was a wonderful marriage and fit.
Murdoch admitted that he has “messed up” with MySpace, the social media website News Corp acquired for $580 million in July 2005. He said that at that time MySpace was sprinting to new heights by hour, and after six years it is worth only $35 million, leaving no doubt that it could not stand the competition with Facebook.