Alibaba Pictures Group, which is a listed movie making arm of China’s biggest eCommerce platform Alibaba, has today announced that it has raised a $260 million funding round for Taobao Movies, valuing the company at $2.1 Billion.
The funding round has been raised for its Taobao Movies subsidiary which operates an online ticketing platform offering ticketing and seat selection services.
This Series A round was led by CDH Investments, Ant Financial Services Group and Sina.com. Other investors in the current round includes Hehe Pictures, Bona Film, Huace Media, Nanpai Entertainment and Union Pictures.
The amount raised in the funding round will be used to sustain the company’s operations and further strengthen its market position in a competitive and fast-developing business segment, said Alibaba Pictures Chairman Shao Xiaofeng.
Commenting about this funding, Alibaba Pictures CEO Zhang Qiang said:
The completion of this Series A Financing demonstrates that the business strategy, market prospects and operational capability of Taobao Movie has been well recognized by the industry. With the support of more abundant resources and capital, we will continue to create greater value for our partners, investors and the market.
Alibaba Pictures Group was formed in late 2014 as a result of the acquisition of ChinaVision Media Group. The company has made deals with the likes of Lionsgate and Wong Kar Wai. In order to become a global player, it has invested in Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation and Korea’s Real.
In 2015, Alibaba Pictures Group acquired Taobao Movies from its parent company Alibaba for $520 million to create “an innovative and integrated online and offline platform of demand-driven movies and TV dramas”.
The company claims to connect more than 5,000 theaters in China, covering 95% of the country’s total theater box office. Alibaba Pictures Group sees it as an integral part of its online promotion and distribution business, as well as a platform that connects consumers with film entertainment.