AT&T has attached a $1 billion price-tag to anime streaming service Crunchyroll, with Sony Pictures Entertainment believed to be a potential buyer. The Japanese giant already owns rival Funimation, but is looking to dominate the anime sector. Earlier reports from The Information suggested AT&T was seeking $1.5 billion for the company, but Variety reports that the asking price is likely to be lower.
Crunchyroll is, to be fair, a big deal, with 70 million members – over 3 million of which pay a monthly fee – but AT&T is currently selling off assets in order to help cut debts. Sony believes that it’s already well-positioned to profit on anime, especially given the synergy of its movie, music, and gaming divisions. But financing a takeover of Crunchyroll would put it in pole position to achieve its aims.