Tencent leads $111M investment in India’s video streaming service MX Player

MX Player, a popular video app that offers both local playback and streaming services, said on Wednesday that it has raised $110.8 million in a new financing round led by Chinese internet giant Tencent as the video app looks to expand its business in India and other international markets.

Karan Bedi, CEO of MX Player, said in an interview that the video app will use the fresh capital to double down on producing original TV shows and broadening its catalog of licensed content.

The app did all of this while consuming little resources, an ability that helped it win tens of millions of users with low-cost Android smartphones in emerging markets such as India.

In fact, India is MX Player’s largest market, with 175 million monthly active users, Bedi said.

The firm, which runs dozens of TV channels in India, operates Hotstar, the market-leading video streaming service.

Bedi, who spearheaded Eros Now’s India business before joining MX Player, said users are increasingly enjoying the original shows.

In recent months, several more firms including e-commerce giant Flipkart and food delivery startup Zomato have launched their video streaming services in the country.

Tencent-rival Alibaba announced earlier this year that it would invest $100 million to expand social video app Vmate in India.

Paytm, a leading financial services firm in India, was also in talks with MX Player to invest in this financial round.

It may invest in the video streaming services app at a later stage, a person familiar with the talks said.

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