Honors Program


Date of this Version


Document Type



Vavricek, M. (2019). The Story of HBO: A Strategic Audit of the World’s Most Innovative Storyteller. Undergraduate Honors Thesis. University of Nebraska-Lincoln.


Copyright 2019, Madeline Vavricek


HBO has been a leader in storytelling for over forty years, bringing audiences their favorite and most ambitious shows. However, as competitors continue to enter the market and the advent of the streaming service, HBO has been forced to adapt while having to simultaneously deliver the high-budget productions that their audience expects and pays for. With the growing problem of password sharing within streaming platforms impacting their bottom line, HBO will have to make strategic financial choices to secure their future in the storytelling and media business. Strategic elements utilized include Porter's Five Forces, a look at internal and external factors in HBO, and the leadership behind the company's recent decisions. With their current crown jewel coming to its series finale this year, HBO will be left without a flagship series to grow and retain subscribers, making them vulnerable and requiring imminent strategic action.