Jeffrey Katzenberg’s Wndco has raised $1billion in funding for its mobile video platform New TV, according to a report from CNN. Investors in the round included Disney, 21st Century Fox, Warner Bros, and Entertainment One.
A Wndrco spokesperson declined to comment on the situation.
According to the report, the service will be geared for mobile viewing and loaded with premium short-form content. To distribute the content, Katzenberg has looked to partner with tech and telecom companies like Facebook and Verizon, CNN sources said, but those companies do not appear to want to throw out their existing services for someone else’s. The report speculates that “New TV” may be a stand-alone service if a partner can’t be found.
The news comes at when more consumers are cutting the cord in favor of skinnier and more affordable OTT Packages, whether it be a vMPVD like SlingTV or a VOD service like Netflix. According to eMarketer, the number of cord-cutters— which the firm defines as adults that have canceled a pay-TV service and continued on without it—will climb 32.8 percent this year to 33.0 million.
With conusmers constantly looking for alternatives to traditional pay-TV, there is a lot of room for NewTV to grow, especially with $1billion dollar funding rounds. However, there is still much skepticism to as if short-form content is something consumers want to pay for. The push into short-form didn’t work well for Verizon when it launched go90 — a free service stacked with short-form content –which is expected to shut down at the end of this month.