EU antitrust regulators are set to give Amazon’s proposed acquisition of US movie studio MGM the go-ahead next week, insiders told Reuters this afternoon.
Announced in May last year, the mega deal would not only ramp up the world’s largest online retailer’s advance into the sphere of TV and film, but it would also put Amazon in even fiercer competition with the likes of Netflix and Disney+.
Coming in at $8.45bn (£6.41bn), the deal is the company’s second biggest, falling just behind its snap up of supermarket chain Whole Foods back in 2017 for a whopping $13.7bn (£10.4bn).
Meanwhile, MGM remains an international movie giant, dominating award seasons and cinema seats, with its most recent releases including House of Gucci and Cyrano.
The iconic movie maker also has the retailer rights to the James Bond franchise, which earned nearly $7bn (£5.3bn) at the box office globally, according to figures from MGM.
Whilst the European Commission declined to comment on its decision, which is due to be announced next week, Tom Standen-Jewell, media analyst at Enders Analysis, praised Amazon’s move in what he called an “extremely competitive” market.
“Differentiation within your library is now an overriding necessity, and what makes some content distinctive, and therefore valuable, is global brand recognition”, he told City A.M.
“Intellectual property like James Bond, Rocky and The Handmaid’s tale provide both long-term library value and the possibility of spin offs with a guaranteed audience. This is why Amazon’s acquisition of MGM might be worth its weight in subscriptions”, he added.
Meanwhile, an Amazon spokesperson told City A.M.:“Completion of the transaction is subject to regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions, and we’re working with regulators to respond to requests.”
The e-commerce giant has been making moves in the streaming space for a while now, and just last month it signed a multi-million pound contract with Shepperton Studios in Surrey.
The exclusive deal will give Prime access to nine sound stages, as well as new workshops and office spaces. It also is a vote of confidence in UK film and TV