What went wrong? Quibi managed to raise nearly $1.8 billion in funding and attract some of the industry’s top players to produce content for the unique platform. Deciding to launch a streaming service designed for people on the go in the middle of a global pandemic, however, proved to be a major misstep.
Quibi, the short-form video streaming platform launched by Jeffrey Katzenberg and Meg Whitman back in April has officially reached the end of its rope. Tonight in an open letter to Quibi's employees, investors, and partners, Katzenberg and Whitman are saying the game is over and Quibi is shutting down.
Quibi was a big idea and there was no one who wanted to make a success of it more than we did. Our failure was not for lack of trying; we’ve considered and exhausted every option available to us.
Sources familiar with the matter told The Information that Katzenberg recently tried to sell the service’s catalog of content to companies like Facebook and NBCUniversal. Both passed on the offer.
The service saw 300,000 installs on launch day but the momentum quickly slowed. In May, it was reported that advertisers were looking to defer payments following the disappointing launch. By June, it was forecasted that Quibi may only realize 30 percent of its initial subscriber goal in the first year. Now, even that looks very optimistic.
Quibi isn’t throwing in the towel just yet. The powers in charge have since expanded access to additional platforms including Android TV, Apple TV, Fire TV and Fire Stick and have been working to pump out more original content.
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