Hulu says it’s not for sale after all

Hulu’s decided it’s not for sale after all, as nobody seems prepared to pay as much as the company’s owners want for it.

After months of dickering with potential buyers, the company’s owners – News Corporation, Providence Equity Partners and Walt Disney – say they’ve given up on the idea.

“Since Hulu holds a unique and compelling strategic value to each of its owners, we have terminated the sale process and look forward to working together to continue mapping out its path to even greater success,” they say in a statement.

“Our focus now rests solely on ensuring that our efforts as owners contribute in a meaningful way to the exciting future that lies ahead for Hulu.”

Almost a year ago, the company abandoned an initial public offering and started looking about for a buyer. Yahoo was the first company to show an interest, with other potential bidders, including Google,Amazon and the Dish Network, later joining the fray.

Bidding reached as much as $2 billion – but Google, which offered this amount, wanted certain conditions, such as guarantees that it wouldn’t be expected to introduce a paywall and that content wouldn’t be limited.

Hulu currently has no long-term content deals, and its status in terms of copyright is unclear. Without content from the existing owners, the company would be rather less viable.

The company’s future plans are less than clear.