×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Wanda Cinemas to Acquire Mtime Chinese Movie E-Commerce Site in $350 Million Deal

Wanda Cinemas announced plans to buy Mtime.com, China’s leading movie e-commerce, news and ticketing portal with 160 monthly unique visitors, to forge a bigger presence in digital entertainment. The deal, announced Wednesday, is valued at $350 million.

According to the announcement, Wanda Cinemas and Mtime will integrate their resources and businesses to reach Chinese consumers to provide “one-stop marketing solutions” for film studios and other media companies.

Mtime.com has merchandise rights from studios including Disney, Marvel Studios, Warner Bros.’ DC Entertainment and Universal Pictures, with over 800 different product lines, and claims to operate the second-largest film database in the world with info, news and reviews. The company is also one of the biggest movie ticket sellers in the Middle Kingdom, representing 90% of the movie theaters in 500 Chinese cities.

The acquisition continues Wanda’s aggressive M&A streak — including buying Legendary Entertainment for $3.5 billion in January. In 2012, Wanda paid $2.6 billion for AMC Theatres, which earlier this month announced a $1.2 billion deal for Odeon and UCI Cinemas Group, Europe’s largest cinema chain. AMC also is bidding to acquire Carmike Cinemas, upping its offer this week to $1.2 billion.

In addition, Wanda is in talks to acquire a 49% stake in Paramount Pictures, even as a fight boils over control of parent company Viacom. The Chinese entertainment giant is on pace to spend more than $30 billion on acquisitions in 2016.

Last summer, Wanda entered into a merchandising agreement with Mtime, under which it took a 20% equity stake in the website. With the acquisition, Wanda is buying out the remaining shares of Mtime from other investors including Fidelity Growth Partners, CBC Capital, Tiger Global Management and Eight Roads Ventures.

Under the terms of the deal, Mtime.com will continue as an independent brand and Kelvin Hou Kai will remain CEO.

“The resources owned by Wanda Cinemas and Mtime.com can well complement each other,” John Zeng, president of Wanda Cinemas, said in announcing the deal. “Wanda Cinemas is China’s largest theater operator with over 60 million members and numerous film IP from China and abroad. The online resources and technologies Mtime.com has can help Wanda further activate the potential and power of the ‘ecological moviegoing platform.'”

Established in 2005, Wanda Cinemas operates 320 theaters in China, Australia and New Zealand with 2,789 total screens. The exhibitor in 2015 held 14% of China’s box-office market share with grosses of 6.3 billion yuan (about $945 million).

More Digital

  • Cory-Haik-Vice

    Vice Media Hires Cory Haik, Former Mic Publisher, as Chief Digital Officer (EXCLUSIVE)

    Vice Media has recruited Cory Haik, former publisher of digital news start-up Mic, as chief digital officer to lead the youth-culture company’s global internet businesses. Haik will be based at Vice’s Brooklyn headquarters and report to CEO Nancy Dubuc. She most recently worked at Mic, which last fall laid off virtually its entire staff before [...]

  • Snapchat logos

    Porn Studio Starts Building X-Rated Snapchat Lenses, Encourages Users to Do the Same

    Adult entertainment company Naughty America wants to use augmented reality to get the word out about its paid services. The company has begun to make Snapchat lenses featuring some of its models, and is teaching its audience to do the same. Naughty America shared three such lenses on its website (link not safe for work) [...]

  • New, Likely Cheaper Galaxy Home Speaker

    Samsung Is Getting Ready to Introduce Second Smart Speaker

    Samsung still isn’t selling its Galaxy Home smart speaker, but the company may be getting ready to introduce a second model soon: An FCC filing for an “AI speaker” suggests that the new model, like the original Galaxy Home, will be dual-branded, featuring both Samsung’s own brand name as well as that of its audio [...]

  • Streaming Placeholder

    TikTok Owner Preparing Streaming Service to Rival Spotify (Report)

    ByteDance, the Beijing-based owner of the TikTok video app, is developing a paid streaming music service aimed at the same emerging markets that Spotify and Apple are seeking to explore, according to a report in Bloomberg. The app could be introduced as early as autumn, according to the report, which adds that the company has [...]

  • VidCon-Now-Stacey-Kelly

    VidCon Launches First Original Series to Promote Creators Year-Round

    VidCon brings together thousands of fervent fans at its annual conventions, who flock to the events to see their favorite YouTubers and other digital celebs in the flesh. Now the Viacom-owned division is trying to keep the excitement burning during the VidCon off-season, too. This week VidCon is launching its first foray into original content [...]

  • Stranger Things

    Coca-Cola Will Revive New Coke in Alliance With Netflix, 'Stranger Things'

    A rush of TV watchers to streaming video has prompted Coca-Cola to test an interesting pour. Coca-Cola will bring New Coke back to market for a brief time, all part of a partnership with Netflix, which has featured Coke in its cult-favorite series “Stranger Things.” The third season of the series, set in 1985, will [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content