Amazon mulls buying MGM Studios to beef up content offering

(Logo courtesy Metro-Goldwyn-Meyer Studios, Graphic by The Desk)

Amazon is in advanced discussions to acquire Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) Studios for around $9 billion, according to a number of reports in entertainment trade publications.

The state of Amazon’s discussions with MGM Studios was first reported by The Information on Monday. The outlet said Amazon’s purchase price could fall between $7 billion and $10 billion, but sources familiar with the discussions said it hovered around $9 billion.

Amazon’s interest in MGM Studios was hardly a secret within the entertainment industry: The technology company and online retail giant began deliberating over a potential acquisition as early as December when management at MGM put the studio and its vast library of content up for sale.

For years, MGM has licensed its “James Bond” films and other movies to cable networks and streaming services in order to generate revenue, including its own Epix premium cable network.

Allowing Amazon to acquire MGM’s content library would help the tech company beef up its own streaming service Prime Video. The company has over 200 million Amazon Prime members who have free access to Prime Video as part of their subscription.

Over the last few years, Amazon has invested heavily in its Prime Video offering: It launched an ad-supported free streaming television service under its IMDb brand and recently acquired exclusive telecast rights to Thursday night games played by the National Football League.

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