Verizon is reportedly considering a plan to acquire online video service Netflix as it looks to enter the video streaming market.
The move, which was first reported via investor research firm Dealbreaker, would be a hugely significant development in the online video market and comes after a tough few months for Netflix, which abandoned plans to split its streaming and DVD services and halted plans for international expansion following large subscriber losses.
Verizon, which currently operates the FiOS television service in the United States, was one of the suitors for online video service Hulu earlier this year. CEO Lowell McAdam told investors at the UBS Annual Global Media and Communications Conference that the company was keen to break into the streaming market, but refused to confirm specific plans.
“The jury’s out, but I do believe there’s a place for over-the-top That model has yet to be determined and I hope we’ll be a player in that,” he said.
Netflix shares rocketed up 6% by the end of yesterday’s financial market, closing at US$75.26, up US$4.37.
The company has launched internationally in Canada and across Latin America and will launch in the UK and Ireland at the start of 2012. However, it has reigned in plans to launch in other markets until it returns to profitability.