| NEW YORK, April 22
NEW YORK, April 22 AT&T Inc said Tuesday
it would partner with The Chernin Group media holding company to
invest $500 million in a joint venture for web-based video
services, making it the latest company aiming to tap the growing
consumer demand for online video.
The move follows announcements by Verizon Communications
, Disney and Dish Network Corp which have
plans to roll out video products outside a traditional TV
Besides the $500 million investment, other financial terms
of the deal were not disclosed.
Chernin Group, former News Corp president Peter
Chernin's holding company, produces films and TV shows, and has
a stake in Crunchyroll, a subscription and video-on-demand
"AT&T's massive reach on those platforms across mobile and
broadband and their commitment to the online video space make
them the perfect fit for this venture with us," Chernin said.
AT&T has about 110 million U.S. wireless customers and for
its U-verse fiber product, it has about 5.5 million video
customers and 10.4 million high-speed Internet customers. AT&T
said on Monday it expects to expand U-verse to up to 21 U.S.
cities, including Chicago and Atlanta.
Earlier this year, The Chernin Group made an unsuccessful
bid to buy the Hulu online video site, owned by Twenty-First
Century Fox, the Walt Disney Co, and Comcast.
In January, Verizon acquired Intel Corp's OnCue
service for an undisclosed sum to accelerate its push into
next-generation video services, including integrating it with
Verizon's FiOS fiber-based Internet and TV service that has more
than 5 million video subscribers, about 5 percent of pay TV
households. The company said it was open to providing
over-the-top content to any device, meaning the content is
utilized over a network but not offered by the network operator.
(additional reporting by Liana Baker; Editing by Chizu