ref="http://www.cityam.com/company/amazon">AMAZON has moved one step closer to muscling in on the UK’s home entertainment industry after putting in an offer to buy out online movie rental service, LoveFilm.
It is understood that Amazon, which is currently expanding its business rapidly, has made an approach for LoveFilm, valuing the company at around £200m.
In 2008, Amazon combined its European rental operations with LoveFilm before taking up a 42 per cent stake in the online rental service after buying out one of the company’s venture capital backers.
LoveFilm, which is currently privately owned, is understood to be considering a stock-market flotation.
In 2009, chief executive Simon Calver hired investment bank Jeffries to assess LoveFilm’s strategic options, including launching an initial public offering. The group has yet to make that move.
The company has more than 1.4m members and a catalogue of over 67,000 films and games.
A spokesperson for LoveFilm would not comment on a possible takeover or potential flotation, while Amazon was not available and did not return calls.