Amazon.com Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) is said to be in talks to buy Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) for about US$9bn, in a deal that would give the ecommerce giant’s Prime Video members access to a vast library of premium film and television content.
Amazon, which last year increased spending by 40% to US$11bn on TV shows, films and music for its Prime services, has more than 200mln Prime members worldwide and around 175 million of those streamed Prime Video content in the past year.
Last week, Amazon announced that a former high-ranking executive had returned to the company in a new role overseeing a consolidated global media and entertainment group, as the group contends with rivals in the streaming sector that include Netflix and Walt Disney Co's Disney+ service.
The talks with Hollywood studio owner MGM were first reported by Variety, citing industry sources.
Buying MGM would give the ecommerce giant access to one of the world’s biggest libraries of premium film and television content, containing around 4,000 titles over many decades and almost 180 Oscar winners in its vast library, including 12 for best picture.
The studio is also home to two of the longest-running and most successful film franchises in cinematic history: James Bond and Rocky. The Bond film series has earned almost US$7bn to date, according to MGM’s website.
MGM was formed in April 1924 and dominated Hollywood for the next three decades under Louis B. Mayer.