Is there a better example of the theme of this issue of renting versus building in marketing? Although Quibi owned the land, they didn’t own what they put on it, and it seems they’ve danced their last dance.

Jeffrey Katzenberg and Meg Whitman show off Quibi at CES | Financial Times

As has been widely reported, Quibi, the struggling short-form mobile video startup led by Jeffrey Katzenberg and Meg Whitman, has made such a flourish on the new media dance floor and has failed to find a partner danced its last dance.

There is plenty of coverage raking over why, despite over 1.7bn in investment, people didn’t feel the shapes Quibi was out there throwing.

OK, enough of the dance metaphor.The thing that piqued our interest when the theme of this month’s issue is “Life for Rent” that discusses building a brand on rented land was that it seems that Quibi didn’t own the media assets on their platform.

So, maybe they owned the land but rented what they put on it. According to Variety Magazine:

Actually, Quibi doesn’t own any of the big-budget premium content for which it has shelled out upwards of $100,000 per minute. The company has seven-year licenses on its short-form series; after two years, content owners have the right to assemble the shows and distribute them elsewhere.

And, of course, as we know from Bill Gates and countless other blog posts, content is the king, the queen, the Grand Poobah, or for this publication, the Freddie Mercury of any digital thing whether it’s this little publication or a one-point seven billion-dollar media bet.

There is plenty more on this topic in this issue from our Rockstar CMO’s and writers, about leveraging what you rent, what you build and own. But, it seems Quibi is a good lesson; better to own than to rent.

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