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Sony Acquires Anime Site Crunchyroll

Sony’s plan to acquire anime site Crunchyroll was first announced in December 2020. This anime site will merge with the already existing anime streaming site Funimation. The main goal of the acquisition is to unify the anime subscription experience under one roof.

The information reported that the acquisition was done for $1.175 billion. AT&T which owned Crunchyroll will use the funds to pay down the debt it amassed from its spending on streaming. AT&T has decided to focus on its core connectivity business. Sony plans to use the Crunchyroll service to broaden its already substantial anime streaming footprint.

Tony Vinciquerra, Chairman and CEO of Sony Pictures Entertainment said that with the acquisition the company has an opportunity to serve anime fans. The company plans to deliver anime content so that the users can experience it from across any platform they choose, from theatrical, events, home entertainment, games, streaming, linear TV.Sony’s announcement follows reports that the U.S. Department of Justice was probing the deal for potential antitrust violations. The U.S. government reportedly wished to determine whether the deal would give Sony a monopoly over streaming anime. The anime site has more than 5 million subscribers.

Vinciquerra said that Crunchyroll adds tremendous value to Sony’s existing anime businesses, including Funimation and our terrific partners at Aniplex and Sony Music Entertainment Japan. The anime site has over 1,000 anime titles and distribution rights for more than 30,000 episodes. It comes with an extensive library and a gaming division that develops web and mobile games based on popular shows in English-speaking markets.

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