It is clear that Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba wants to branch out further into digital entertainment — last year it acquired social music-streaming service Xiami and developed a smart TV operating system, while this year it stepped into mobile games.
Now Alibaba has agreed to pay $804 million for a majority stake in ChinaVision Media Group, a Hong Kong firm specializing in TV and film production. This could very possibly mean that Alibaba may soon be taking steps to produce content in collaboration with ChinaVision. After all, throughout last year, Chinese tech firms were already taking steps to make their mark within the online video space, seeking to capitalize on the opportunities as Chinese consumers effectively started taking their TVs to the subway.
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An Alibaba spokesperson tell us: We are pleased to collaborate with the ChinaVision Media Group to explore future business opportunities as part of Alibaba’s digital entertainment strategy.”
The company’s strategy has been pretty clear — by beefing up its services to include TVs, music and games, it is hoping to provide a diverse range of offerings to capture the attention of users and keep them within its ecosystem, which could ultimately lead to more e-commerce opportunities.
In April, Alibaba’s Taobao Marketplace rolled out functionality for Xiami, apparently to help transform the retail site from merely a shopping platform to a lifestyle and media platform. Subsequently, the company also rolled out smart TVs, which would incorporate e-commerce and support games and other forms of entertainment. Early this year, it launched mobile games on its Taobao shopping app and Laiwang chat app.
Headline image via Peter Parker/AFP/Getty Images