According to sources, the American e-commerce behemoth Amazon Inc. is in advanced negotiations to acquire Times Internet’s MX Player, a video streaming service.
According to one of the unnamed sources cited in the stories, Amazon has hired one of the Big Four accounting firms to perform exclusive due diligence on MX Player. It will most likely take 30 to 40 days to complete.
The agreement hasn’t been finalized yet, but if everything goes as planned, it might be done in two months. Zee Entertainment and Sony, in addition to Amazon, are allegedly also waiting to complete the transaction.
Times Internet paid $140 million for MX Player in 2018. It claims to have 300 million or more users worldwide. It is unknown how much the prospective buyer plans to offer for MX Player, but according to stories that cited sources, Times Internet was seeking over $100 million for the software, while Amazon’s internal team estimated its value to be about Rs 500 crore ($60 million). The transaction will probably cost between Rs 600 and Rs 900 crore.
Significance of OTT
A huge portion of MX Player’s increased popularity in nations like India can be attributed to the fact that it offers unrestricted access to a wide range of videos, including live cable TV stations. As a result, the majority of the service’s revenue comes from advertising.
MX Player was one of the first video apps to support short-form videos. It did this because India decided to ban TikTok in the whole country in the middle of 2020.MX Player eventually merged that company with ShareChat’s short-video service Moj in a $900 million agreement.
The 184-year-old Bennett Coleman and Company, which manages more than 30 assets including the English-language daily Times of India, the news outlet Indiatimes, the business weekly Economic Times, and the advertising firm Columbia, is the parent company of Times Online. In India, Amazon owns both the ad-supported MiniTV service and the subscription streaming service Prime Video.The free MiniTV service for Android phone customers was made available by Amazon in May 2021 through the Amazon shopping app. Later, iPhone users were also given access to the program.
Prime Video focuses on the top SEC (socioeconomic classes) segments, which is also related to the Prime subscription, which gives you free shipping on eligible items and music without ads in addition to video content.
MiniTV, on the other hand, is for anyone with a smartphone and a data connection. You don’t have to be a member to use it.The addition of MX Player will greatly expand Amazon’s AVoD (advertiser video-on-demand) business.
Times Internet has made efforts to divest a number of businesses in recent years as the organization gets ready for a significant restructure. In February last year, the business sold ShareChat, which is financed by Temasek, its MX Takatak short-video platform.
In May 2022, Times Internet sold Dineout to Swiggy in a stock deal. It sold MensXP and iDiva, two lifestyle publications, as well as the influencer marketing firm Hypp to Mensa Brands a month later, in December.