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Youku.com (YOKU) partners with Warner Bros.; shares up sharply

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Youku.com YOKU partners with Warner Bros.; shares up sharply

Shares in China's biggest video streaming site, Youku.com Inc. (NYSE: YOKU) were up more than 8 percent after-hours on news that Youku has partnered with Warner Bros. Studios to become the exclusive online vendor in China for the blockbuster film “Inception.”
Youku will offer HD streaming of the film on multiple devices (including mobile phones) through its paid Youku Premium on-demand service.

"Through building long-term partnerships with copyright holders and communicating with our media partners, Youku Premium is creating a whole new way for people to find and watch the content they want, when they want it," Youku founder and CEO Victor Koo said in a press release.

Originally started as a YouTube-like site for user-generated video content, Youku has increasingly turned its gaze toward premium content as it tries to develop a sustainable business model. The site now boasts more than 10,000 hours of premium online video (including study materials).

Youku.com's IPO last month briefly saw shares rise above $48 before falling down to a low of $29. Shares rose 8 percent to $38.55 after-hours as investors cheered the aggressive move toward a Netflix-inspired (NASDAQ: NFLX) premium streaming model.

All told, Christopher Nolan's Inception, which stars Leonardo DiCaprio, has already grossed more than $823 million worldwide, according to BoxOfficeMojo.com. Terms of the deal with Warner Bros. were not disclosed.

Posted-In: Hollywood Netflix Warner Bros.News Events Global After-Hours Center Media Best of Benzinga

 

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