Tencent purchased the content, technology, and resources of Malaysian video streaming service iFlix, which operates in 13 markets in South and Southeast Asia. Through this move, Tencent trying to extend the reach of its own streaming platform WE TV into the region.
The company said, “This is in line with our strategy to expand our international streaming platform, WeTV, across Southeast Asia and provide users with international, local, and original high-quality content,”. The company did not reveal the value of the deal but some leaked speculated that it was worth several tens of millions.
The company also said that the majority of Iflix’s current staff will retain their roles including CEO Marc Barnett, “Our current priority is to make sure smooth integration with our existing business and also talent retention.”
Previously, iFlix provides a wide variety of content to the local audience. It gives away some content for free and charged money for their premium services. Last year, Tencent already launched its first overseas video streaming service in Thailand named WE-TV. Tencent Video or We TV has over 89 million subscribers and more than 200 million daily active users in China.
A major competitor at home, Baidu-controlled iQiyi, has also started expanding in Asia but has only taken small steps so far. Tencent reported in May a sharp rise in first-quarter net profit after a surge in demand for its online games as the coronavirus pandemic forced people to stay at home.