According to four people with knowledge of the situation, Amazon is in talks with Times Internet to investigate buying MX Player. MX player is one of the biggest on-demand video streaming services in India, as the American e-commerce company looks to expand its entertainment ambitions in the important international market.
Three sources warned that while the discussions are still under progress, a deal may not be reached. The agreement’s terms have not yet been decided. A request for comment from Times Internet and Amazon did not receive a prompt response. Sources spoke about personal concerns while requesting anonymity.
According to two sources, at least two additional players, including Zee-Sony, have expressed interest in purchasing the Times Internet-owned app. The discussions are noteworthy for MX Player, which Times Internet, an Indian company, paid $140 million for in 2018. The video app has accumulated more than 300 million users worldwide and is well-known for its support of a variety of video codecs and dependability on budget Android handsets. In recent years, it has added original content.
MX player combined operation with ShareChat’s short-video service Moj
MX Player has grown significantly in popularity in areas like India in part because it provides free access to a large selection of videos, including live cable TV channels. Instead, advertising generates the majority of the service’s income.
One of the first video apps to embrace the short-form video format was MX Player, seizing the chance presented by New Delhi’s mid-2020 decision to outlaw TikTok throughout the nation. In a $900 million deal, MX Player eventually combined that operation with ShareChat’s short-video service Moj.
The 184-year-old Bennett Coleman and Company, which runs more than 30 assets, including the English daily Times of India, the news source Indiatimes, the business newspaper Economic Times, and the advertising agency Colombia, is the parent company of Times Internet. As the corporation gears itself for a significant restructure, it has recently sought to sell off a number of assets, including edtech provider GradeUp and restaurant tech platform Dineout.
Amazon has invested over $7 billion in India
Amazon has been fiercely vying for a piece of the Indian video industry for many years. Over the past ten years, Amazon has invested over $7 billion in India. The e-commerce company maintains a free, ad-supported video streaming service in India in addition to offering Prime Video subscription at discounted rates there.
With over half a billion monthly active users in India, Google’s YouTube dominates the video business there, according to mobile analytics company Sensor Tower. Less than 40 million Americans use Prime Video and Netflix each month. MX Player claims to have over 150 million active users in India and offers its premium services in various foreign countries. The company last raised capital in 2019, when Tencent led a financing round in which it secured an investment of $110.8 million.