Flipkart has held talks to buy a stake in Hotstar, Star India’s video streaming service, as part of India’s largest online retailer’s strategy to bet big on video content and attract more Internet consumers and shoppers. The talks have not reached an advanced stage and may or may not result in a transaction, for now the talks have been requested to be kept confidential.
The development comes a few months after the online platform tied up with video streaming service Hotstar and launched a video advertising platform. The new platform, Shopper Audience Network, will allow brands to target consumers through personalized video ads on Hotstar.
Experts say that the talks with Hotstar is important when video streaming market is growing exponentially in the country. The content business is also expected to be the biggest driver in the global consumer Internet economy.
According to the report, Flipkart has had discussions with Netflix as well, however, the talks didn’t progress further.
Meanwhile, the OTT content market is currently valued at $280 million with nearly 100 million subscribers, and it is poised to grow at 35 per cent year-on-year.
Hotstar is the biggest OTT platform in the country. As of late December last year, Hotstar had monthly active subscribers base of 75 million, according to Counterpoint.
Importantly, the development in Flipkart is reported a few weeks after Walmart showed similar interest in video streaming services in the U.S.
The offline retail giant is planning to launch a video streaming platform, giving a direct competition to Amazon Prime and Netflix in the U.S.
Experts say that Walmart is aggressively following the market trend and changing itself as per consumer requirements. Original programming is expensive, but Walmart isn’t afraid to spend money to ensure it remains competitive with Amazon.
The development was first reported by Mint.