In a recent buzz it is been announced that Alibaba group's entertainment unit Alibaba Pictures Group obtained a majority stake in ticketing company TicketNew by investing Rs 120 crore in an all-cash deal. Further, it is being announced that four members from Alibaba Pictures would unite the board of TicketNew.
The ten-year-old bootstrapped company, focused on movie ticketing, was looking out for a strategic investor. "We were a profitable company, registering a 60% growth. VC investment was not an option for the growth we were looking at," said Ramkumar Nammalvar, founder and CEO, TicketNew. Additionally, the present team will also carry on to run the operations after acquisition, too.
Headquartered in Chennai, with offices in the US and the UK, the company would use to make bigger their existence across India. "Prior to the investment, we had a south India presence, confined mostly to neighbourhood theatres. We take care of online ticketing for those theatres who cannot afford the IT and infrastructure of their bigger counterparts. With this acquisition, we will have a presence in 330 cities and have partnered with 1,200 cinemas," added Nammalvar.
The CEO added that with the proposed acquisition, TicketNew would also help augment the share of tickets purchased online. "In India, close to 15% of the movie tickets are purchased online as opposed to 80% in China," he said.
Previously established as ChinaVision Media Group, Alibaba Pictures was acquired by the parent company in 2014. In China, Alibaba Pictures handles its ticketing business from side to side subsidiary Tao Piao Piao.
As we all know that the online ticketing industry today is largely dominated by BookMyShow, which has in its domain, ticketing for films and events. While TicketNew on the other hand, now appears to focus on pure-play movie ticketing. The Chinese corporation had earlier invested in consumer internet companies including Snapdeal, Paytm and Ola.