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Technology & Entrepreneurship

Hulu's Job Growth In San Antonio Not Affected by Losses

Courtesy Hulu

Internet streaming company Hulu lost $920 million in 2017, according to BTIG Research, an investment research group. The number is based on filings from cable conglomerate Comcast, which owns 30 percent of the company. Filings from other owners — Disney, Fox and Time Warner — show the losses accrued while owners invested an additional billion dollars in Hulu.

The losses have not kept Hulu from growing its San Antonio footprint. The company officially opened its Viewer Experience Headquarters near the medical center on the city’s northwest side in November of 2017. According to documents the company filed for city incentives, Hulu created 268 full-time jobs.

The company is halfway to the 500 jobs it agreed to create by 2020. It has already invested nearly $6 million in real and personal property, and has to invest twice that in the next two years to meet its obligation.

The city gave Hulu a 100 percent tax abatement for six years, valued at more than $278,000. Bexar County also voted to give the company a 10 year tax abatement worth $403,000. The Texas Enterprise fund, which is managed by Gov. Greg Abbott,  gave an additional $1.2 million grant to Hulu for selecting San Antonio as the site of its Viewer Experience Headquarter.

According to Richard Greenfield with BTIG Research, Hulu’s losses are expected to grow 80 percent to $1.7 billion this year.

Hulu launched its live streaming TV service in 2017, which was one reason the company launched it’s Viewer Experience Headquarters.

It has been aggressive in developing and purchasing content. Hulu’s then-CEO Mike Hopkins said in an interview at the Paley Center the company would spend $2.5 billion for original content. Hulu’s original show “The Handmaid’s Tale” won a Golden Globe for best TV show last month.

Netflix said in an investors call it spent $6 billion for new content.

Hulu did not respond to a request for comment.

Paul Flahive can be reached at paul@tpr.org or on Twitter @paulflahive