MX Player, video OTT platform, has received $110 million (Rs 775 Crores) in fresh funding from Tencent and Times Internet. The deal marks Tencent’s second investment into a Times Internet asset, after it invested in Gaana, the music streaming platform, in 2018.
Times Internet acquired a majority stake in MX Player in 2018 from Zenjoy, a mobile-games company that remains an investor in the company. With over 175 million monthly active users in India and over 275 million monthly active users worldwide, MX Player is a leading video platform on smartphones globally. Since its formal OTT launch in February 2019, MX has leapfrogged competition to become the second largest video streaming platform in India. MX Player’s ‘everytainment’ vision – with offline video playback, video streaming, music streaming, and more, positions it to be a leading player in the digital entertainment landscape. MX Player’s OTT service is now live in 5 countries. In 2018, Times Internet acquired a majority stake in MX Player from Chinese mobile games firm Zenjoy, which continues to be a shareholder.
Speaking on the investment, Karan Bedi, CEO MX Player, said, “We’re happy to welcome our new partners, whose investment is a glowing endorsement of our stellar growth and huge future potential. Our vision is to be one of the world’s largest entertainment platforms, serving our users across their online entertainment needs, starting with streaming video and beyond.”
Satyan Gajwani, Vice Chairman, Times Internet, said, “MX Player was our most ambitious investment last year, and it has the potential to change mobile entertainment in India and in the world. It plays an important part of Times Internet’s strategy of being the largest consumer platform in India, and we’re excited to have Tencent help us in this mission.”
Jeffrey Li, Managing Partner, Tencent Investment, said, “Within a relatively short period of time, MX Player has leveraged its vast user base and rich content library to be one of the leading video-streaming services in India. As the smartphone user base continues to expand in India, we look forward to working with MX Player to further grow its platform by delivering original content and a differentiated user experience.”
India’s Video OTT market (currently pegged at Rs. 23,000 cr or $3.3bn) will grow at 29% annually, reaching nearly Rs. 62,000 Cr ($8.9 billion) by 2024, according to a recent KPMG report. 90% of this is led by AVOD. India has the second highest per capita online video consumption in the world, with over 325 million video consumers watching nearly 70 mins /day today, growing to an estimated 580 million viewers by 2024.