MX Player, a popular Indian OTT video app that offers both local playback and streaming services, said it has raised $110.8 million in a new financing round led by Chinese internet giant Tencent as MX Player looks to expand its business in India and other international markets.
Times Internet, which acquired a majority stake in MX Player in late 2017 for $140 million, also participated in the Series A financing round.
The addition of Tencent, which has invested in a handful of Indian startups including Times Internet-owned Gaana, “is a great sign of confidence,” said Satyan Gajwani, vice chairman of Times Internet. “Tencent is a leading global force in music and video, and there’s a lot for us to learn and leverage from their capabilities,” he added.
Karan Bedi, CEO of MX Player, said that the video app will use the fresh capital to produce original TV shows and broadening its catalog of licensed content. The firm, which has so far added 15 original shows to its platform, has already commissioned production of another 20 by year-end, he said.
The Singapore-headquartered firm’s push into original shows and licensed content underscores one of the strangest evolution for a video app. MX Player originated in Korea as an app that could run video files in a wide-range of formats locally stored on a phone.