Digital payments firm Paytm and Chinese internet firm Tencent may invest up to $125 million (nearly Rs 860 crore) in Times Internet’s online video streaming platform MX Player this month against purchase of equity.
“Tencent and Paytm are planning to invest $100-125 million in MX Player against purchase of equity. The investment is expected to happen this month,” sources privy to the discussion among the three companies told PTI.
Times Internet is likely to hold a majority stake in MX Player even after completion of the funding round, the sources said.
With over 75 million daily active users, MX Player claims itself to be the largest entertainment platform in India with presence on one out of every two smartphones.
It currently operates on an ad-supported model and is a free-to-use app for premium content ranging across drama, comedy, reality and romance in Hindi and Indian regional languages.
“While Tencent has been investing in Indian internet companies, Paytm’s investment plans are part of its long-term plan to focus on providing more content to users and increasing user-engagement,” the sources said.
E-mail query sent to Tencent, Paytm, and Times Internet elicited no immediate reply.
In June 2018, Times Internet acquired MX Player for $200 million, and announced that it would turn it into a full-fledged video-streaming platform with movies, shows, music videos, and several hours of original programming. It would compete with the likes of YouTube, Hotstar, Amazon Prime Video, Voot, etc. in India.
In February 2019, MX Player relaunched as an OTT app, offering 50,000 hours of India-specific content in 10 languages, including English, Hindi, Bengali, Marathi, Gujarati, Punjabi, Tamil, Telugu, and Malayalam.
It has recorded over 500 million downloads and is the #2 app in the ‘Video Players and Editors’category of Google Play Store with a rating of 4.5 out of 5.