Amazon and MGM Wednesday announced a definitive merger agreement had been reached, under which Amazon will acquire MGM Studios for a purchase price of US $ 8.45 billion.
The transaction represents a full-scale landing by the e-commerce giant into the entertainment industry. MGM has nearly a century of film history and complements the work of Amazon Studios, which has focused primarily on television show production.
Amazon has vowed to help preserve Metro Goldwyn Meyer's legacy and catalogue of films, and provide customers with greater access to these existing works.
MGM has an extensive catalogue with more than 4000 films ... which together have won more than 180 Academy Awards and 100 Emmys, said Mike Hopkins, senior vice president of Prime Video and Amazon Studios.
The real financial value behind this deal is the treasure trove of intellectual property in the deep catalogue that we plan to reimagine and develop together with the talented team at MGM. It is very exciting and offers many opportunities for high-quality storytelling,” he added.
Kevin Ulrich, Chairman of the MGM Board of Directors, said that It has been an honour to have been part of the incredible transformation of Metro Goldwyn Mayer. It took immensely talented people with a true belief in a vision to get here. On behalf of the Board, I would like to thank the MGM team who helped us get to this historic day.
I am very proud that MGM's Lion, which has long evoked Hollywood's Golden Age, will continue its story, and the idea born from the creation of United Artists lives on in the way the founders originally intended their vision. The opportunity to align MGM's history with Amazon is an inspiring combination,” he went on.
In recent years, Amazon has become one of the big players in the entertainment industry through Amazon Prime Video. Subscriptions to its platform - whose direct competitors are Netflix and Disney Plus - exceed 200 million worldwide. Its investment was $ 11 billion in video and music content during 2020, up from $ 7.8 billion in 2019.
MGM - which until today was owned by hedge funds like Anchorage Capital Group - has been considered the desired target by several potential buyers for years, but the sale had never been closed. The company gave new impetus last year as it reportedly hired consultants to scout for deals. Ultimately, Bezos - the richest man in the world - managed to get hold of the coveted film and television firm.