Roku IPO: Group launches new channel ahead of upcoming IPO

on Sep 13, 2017
Updated: Mar 11, 2020

Roku has launched a new channel on its own platform, the streaming device maker has said. The move comes as the company recently filed for an initial public offering (IPO) in an effort to raise $100 million. The device maker, however, has so far not disclosed details on the size of the deal or the prospective valuation of its upcoming IPO.

Roku announced in a statement last week that it was launching a new streaming channel on its platform, specifically dedicated to giving customers access to a collection of movies, with no subscription, fee or logins required. The new service, dubbed ‘The Roku Channel’, is ad-supported and is expected to have, on average, approximately half the advertising per programming hour as compared to traditional ad-supported linear TV.

“We’re always looking for ways to add value and make TV better for our customers,” Rob Holmes, Vice President of Programming at Roku, commented in the statement. “With The Roku Channel, we’re responding to consumer demand and helping content publishers deliver content through a new experience that makes finding free entertainment easy for our customers.”

Industry magazine TechCrunch meanwhile noted in its coverage of the news that Roku had said that its own in-house ad sales team was in charge of selling ads against the content on the new channel. The new ad-supported service could help the company boost its revenue. For the half-year ended June 30, the company generated revenue of $199.7 million, up 23 percent from $162.3 million in the six months ended July 2.

The channel launch comes ahead of the Alibaba-backed Best will be tapping investors about $1 billion in what could be the largest float of a Chinese company in the US this year.