Christmas came a little bit early for Roku shareholders on Thursday morning, with the streaming device company’s stock price hitting a new all-time high, a day after announcing a deal with HBO Max. The deal ended a seven-month standoff between Roku and WarnerMedia, HBO Max’s parent company, insuring the streaming service would be available to Roku’s 46 million active accounts by Christmas Day, when “Wonder Woman 1984” is set to debut on the service.
Roku opened at $346 per share on Thursday, easily topping its previous all-time high of $336.17, set earlier this month. The stock soon climbed to $352.12, before dropping a bit and hovering near $347 per share an hour into trading.
The surge added to an already big year for Roku, which has seen its share price climb 153% since the start of 2020. That increase has come, in large part, due to the continued shift toward streaming in 2020, something that has been accelerated by the coronavirus pandemic forcing millions of people to stay inside, watching shows from their couch. Streaming services like Netflix and Fubo TV have enjoyed similar stock bumps this year.
The Roku-HBO Max deal was critical for both companies. It brings HBO Max to the most popular streaming platform in the U.S., for one thing, with Roku on Wednesday saying the deal will make HBO Max available to 100 million people overall. That’s obviously critical for HBO Max heading into 2021, when the company is set to release 17 big-budget films, including the fourth “Matrix” movie, on the service at the same time they hit theaters.
Adding HBO Max was also an important move for Roku, a company that mentions each quarter how many hours of content its users had streamed. (Last quarter, Roku accounts watched more than 14 billion hours of content, coming out to about 3.6 hours of content watched each day per account.) By landing HBO Max, the company doesn’t have to worry about viewers gravitating toward competitors like Apple TV to watch the latest HBO releases.
AT&T, the parent company of both WarnerMedia and HBO Max, did not enjoy the same Wall Street rally on Thursday, though, with its share price down 1.75% to $29.76 per share.
For more details on Roku’s big year and its plans for 2021, read SVP Scott Rosenberg’s recent interview with TheWrap by clicking here.