Quibi’s Throwing in the Towel, Specifically to Roku

After launching only in April this year, with a $1.75 billion infusion of cash and the leadership of former Disney and Dreamworks bigwig Jeffrey Katzenberg, the service is ending as part of the closure of its holding company, Quibi Holdings

Quibi is in late-stage discussions to slang its content catalog to Roku, as the short-form streaming service unwinds its operations following a failed run after just 6 months.

Quibi, which was founded by movie mogul Jeffrey Katzenberg, put up $1.75 billion with an aspiring plan to develop high-end content for mobile phones. But the service, which launched in April, never secured momentum and Quibi revealed in October it was closing up shop. a crash landing for a once highly touted startup that attracted some of the biggest names in Hollywood and had looked to revolutionize how people consume entertainment.

The streaming service, which served up shows in 5- to 10-minute “chapters” formatted to fit a smartphone screen, has been inundated with problems since its April debut, facing lower-than-expected viewership and a lawsuit.

Under the terms the companies have discussed, Roku would acquire rights to Quibi’s library.

“Our failure was not for lack of trying,” Mr. Katzenberg and CEO Meg Whitman said in an open letter to employees and investors. “We’ve considered and exhausted every option available to us.” Disney Rolls Out Streaming Plans & They’re Not Playin’

Mr. Katzenberg and Ms. Whitman decided to shut down the company in an effort to return as much dough back to investors as possible instead of trying to extend the life of the company and risk burning more capital. Employees will be laid off and will be paid a severance, the people said, and Quibi will explore selling the rights to some of its content to other media and technology companies.

Roku, which sells the most prominent streaming-media player in the U.S., is pushing all of its chips into content with its own ad-supported app, the Roku Channel, which offers movies and shows produced by other companies. A deal with Quibi would give Roku a solid repertoire of exclusive programming.

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