Paytm, the leading Indian online payments company announced the acquisition of Orbgen Technologies Pvt. Ltd., the firm that operates TicketNew, a ticketing platform based in Chennai. The cost of the deal has not been disclosed yet, but according to stock based transactions, the deal is estimated to have cost between $30-40 million.
The deal will see Paytm acquiring the business from Alibaba Pictures, the entertainment channel of Chinese giant Alibaba Group, which bought a majority stake in Tickenew barely a year ago. The acquisition was made as Paytm wishes to connect its 300 Mn customers to TicketNew partner cinemas, which will additionally drive Paytm’s utility and revenues.
“We are on a mission to be the one-stop destination for all movie and entertainment ticketing needs. It is our goal to be the leader in every city in India and offer the opportunity to all cinema partners to reach customers. TicketNew founders have built a fantastic business in South India and share the same partnership mindset as Paytm,” said Madhur Deor, CFO and SVP of Paytm about the acquisition deal.
Paytm claims that its entertainment channel has increased online penetration in India by over 50%, driven by a strong business in South India and exclusive partnerships with famous single screen theatres and regional multiplex chains such as Suresh Productions, SVC, Anusri Chinemas, V Celluloid, etc…
TicketNew is a ticketing platform that saw the day in 2007 by Ramkumar Nammalvar, who now operates as CEO of the Chennai-based company. In June 2017, Chinese major Alibaba’s entertainment arm, Alibaba Pictures acquired a majority stake in the firm, which represented the firm’s first acquisition out of China.
Paytm’s Ticketing Platform
Paytm first forayed in the ticketing sector in March 2016 when its stroke a partnership with PVR. In a short lapse of time, Paytm grew rapidly to operate in over 660 cities. Additionally, to strengthen its hold in the entertainment platform, Paytm acquired a majority stake in Insider.in, an events ticketing platform, for $5.42 Mn.
Since the Insider.in acquisition, Paytm claims to have successfully sold tickets for over 8,000 events, selling over a million tickets. Additionally, the company claims to have achieved a 5x growth in online ticketing sale in 2017, selling over 52 Mn tickets for movies and events alike. The platform now targets selling over 100 Mn tickets until the year end and is looking forward to add more regional theaters to its portfolio. In comparison, BookMyShow sells about 10 million tickets monthly with hikes going up to 15 million in blockbuster season.