Flipkart’s interest in BookMyShow appears to be aligned with its strategy to fuel the usage of PhonePe. The Bengaluru-based company is in the preliminary stage to invest in the online movie and event booking platform. In case, the deal goes through, PhonePe is likely to see a surge in the transaction and more frequent use case for its users.
The investment in BookMyShow will also usher Flipkart’s foray into entertainment offering and compete against likes of Netflix, Hotstar, Amazon Prime Video in crowded online entertainment space in India.
Earlier this year, BookMyShow had forayed into audio entertainment with Jukebox. The service lets users download free music through music credits earned by them while booking movie and event tickets at BookMyShow’s platform.
The Mumbai-based company is also focusing on local language content for both its video and audio platforms to gain a strong foothold in tier II and III cities. Meanwhile, Flipkart is trying to penetrate smaller cities.
The strategic partnership with BookMyShow will increase Flipkart’s reach into smaller cities where consumption of online entertainment is catching on fast.
“Flipkart and Amazon will both want to build multiple service capabilities across platforms for their current customer base and in that context, multiple such strategic partnerships will be likely as they look to build out services (beyond just the e-commerce marketplace),” said an investor to the Economic Times.
Taking a leaf out of Alibaba’s strategy, online marketplaces in India are trying to build different verticals in services. Amazon Prime Video has allotted Rs 2,000 crore for India to have a strong grip on localised content.
In August this year, Amazon announced three new reality formats for its Indian subscribers. The online retailing giant also invested in-home services marketplace Housejoy.
The strategic investment in BookMyShow will also equip Flipkart to compete with Paytm’s wallet business. Over the past couple of years, Paytm has been trying to build the ecosystem for its payment business through strategic investment.
The Alibaba-backed company had made Rs 35 crore strategic investment in the online event ticketing platform Insider.in. It’s also in talks with deal and discovery platform Little and Nearbuy for buyouts.