Walt Disney Co. (NYSE:DIS) is shutting down its Hotstar U.S. service as a standalone platform in 2022 as part of its push toward the Disney streaming bundle.
What Happened: The content available on the Hotstar service in the U.S., which is South-Asia-centered, will be divided between Hulu and ESPN+, Disney said, as reported by Variety. Disney acquired Hotstar through its deal for most of 21st Century Fox’s assets in 2019.
Cricket matches are the most-watched content on Hotstar. Beginning Sept. 1, ESPN+ will be the U.S. streaming home for live cricket events, including the Indian Premier League cricket matches.
Meanwhile, Bollywood and South Asian films as well as Hotstar specials will be shifted to Hulu.
Why It Matters: Disney is phasing out the Hotstar U.S. service as part of its efforts to streamline its streaming portfolio and encourage Hotstar customers in the U.S. to switch over to the Disney Bundle.
The Disney streaming bundle, including Disney+, Hulu and ESPN+, begins at $13.99 a month. Disney has 116 million Disney+ subscribers.
Price Action: Disney shares closed 0.7% higher in Tuesday’s regular trading session at $181.30 and further rose 0.2% in the after-hours session to $181.30.