Sony and AT&T WarnerMedia were in a partnership when Crunchyroll and Funimation joined at the hip, but that partnership dissolved back in 2018 when the two anime streaming services parted ways, thus diverting property rights between the two platforms. Now it looks like the two could join once more if Sony accepts the bid that WarnerMedia has put in place for Sony to purchase Crunchyroll for a whopping 1.5 billion dollars.
According to a recent report, WarnerMedia put forth the bid for the 1.8 billion dollar asking price, a bid that Sony wasn't thrilled with and didn't see as realistic. According to the same report, Sony was warmed up to the idea until they saw the asking price, though word is that negotiations are still in progress. Whether or not WarnerMedia concedes or not to a lowered price tag remains to be seen.
We've reached you to WarnerMedia for comment but this would be a massive move for the streaming community in terms of services specific to the anime vertical. With both Crunchyroll and Funimation housing major properties regarding anime shows, seeing the separation between the two being removed would be a massive game-changer.
For those that may be unaware, Crunchyroll and Funimation parted ways due to AT&T buying WarnerMedia, which is where the conflict of interest first started. This move eventually fell into a normal bidding war for anime rights, which caused the previous division of properties all the more glaring.
When it came to who came out on top after this 'breakup' between the two companies, Crunchyroll definitely got the short end of the stick in relation to a deal to acquire Viz Media Europe and Webtoons. Funimation used what they had to instead boost their own lineups while also increasing value for Hulu where they used to increase value for Crunchyroll.
No word yet on how the negotiations are going and if an agreement has been met, but it would be great to see the two together again so we can watch all of our favorite anime shows in one locations versus being spread apart across Netflix, Hulu, Funimation, Crunchyroll, and Amazon Prime.
We can dream.
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What do you think about the bid for a buyout courtesy of Sony for Crunchyroll? Sound off with your thoughts over on Twitter @PrimaGames!