Hulu recently announced they have doubled the number of paid subscribers over the course of the last year despite the fact that founding chief executive Jason Kilar stepped down last month. Reaching four million paid subscribers is a noteworthy milestone even as Hulu’s two major owners, News Corporation and Walt Disney Company, contemplate selling the venture.
The announcement came during the Digital Content NewsFronts event for advertisers earlier today in New York. Hulu used their time to showcase some upcoming original series set to premiere this year. The company, along with rivals Amazon and Netflix, are investing heavily in the idea that original content will be a major selling point moving forward.
Hulu is banking on several new shows like “The Awesomes,” an animated series about superheroes from the producer of “Late Night With Jimmy Fallon” and those associated with “Saturday Night Live.” “Quick Draw,” a comedic Western set in Kansas around 1870, is another of the third wave of original shows for Hulu.
Even with the success of original content, the most popular shows are still those that are licensed from other media companies. Hulu noted they work with more than 470 partners and have more than 70,000 television episodes available collectively across free and paid memberships.
That may change over time, however, as licensing fees are on the rise and more competitors crowd the marketplace. Just last week, Yahoo secured exclusive licensing rights to old episodes of Saturday Night Live – content that Hulu used to offer.