Erik Huggers, the current head of Intel Media’s budding-but-troubled over-the-top pay-TV service, is interested in the permanent CEO post at Web TV hub Hulu, the New York Post reported Tuesday.
Others who are interested in the top Hulu post include departing NBCUniversal exec Lauren Zalaznick and Fox Networks Group president Mike Hopkins, the paper noted, adding that Hulu, according to an unnamed source, is “leaning toward an internal candidate.” Hulu was not immediately available for comment on Tuesday morning.
Andy Forssell, Hulu’s SVP of content since 2007, stepped into as Hulu’s acting CEO following the departure of Jason Kilar at the end of the first quarter of 2013.
Huggers’ apparent interest in the Hulu post comes a week after reports spread that Intel Media’s ambitious OnCue “virtual MSO” service could miss its 2013 launch window and find itself in jeopardy of being shut down due to a confluence of factors, including trouble securing enough content deals to create a compelling OTT pay-TV service, concerns about how many customers the service might attract, and a lack of enthusiasm from newIntel Media is believed to be pursuing a variety of partnership angles to help its OTT TV dreams alive.
Amazon, Samsung and Netflix are among those potential partners, according to media reports. Two industry sources told Multichannel News that Intel Media has also reached out to Liberty Media about forming a partnership that might also include an investment but that the Liberty side has shown no interest in Intel Media’s overture. Another source said the competitive ramifications of Intel’s OTT project are alienating execs in charge of the company’s set-top and DOCSIS modem chip unit that does business with cable operators and their suppliers. Intel Corp. CEO Brian Krzanich.
The New York Times reported Sunday that Intel believes it will need to sign on 5 million subs during its first three years to make OnCue “worthwhile,” adding that the Intel Media unit was in the “advanced stages of negotiations” with Amazon about forging a partnership that would link OnCue to Amazon’s OTT VOD service.