Amazon.com Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) has agreed the acquisition of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) for US$8.45bn.
The deal gives the e-commerce giant’s Prime Video members access to a vast library of premium film and television content including James Bond’s back catalogue.
“Amazon will help preserve MGM’s heritage and catalogue of films, and provide customers with greater access to these existing works,” the companies said in a statement.
Amazon, which last year increased spending by 40% to US$11bn on TV shows, films and music for its Prime services, has more than 200mln Prime members worldwide and around 175 million of those streamed Prime Video content in the past year.
Competition among the streaming giants that include Netflix and Walt Disney Co’s Disney+ service has ratcheted up several notches in recent months.
The talks with Hollywood studio owner MGM were first reported by Variety, citing industry sources.
Buying MGM would give the e-commerce giant access to one of the world’s biggest libraries of premium film and television content, containing around 4,000 titles over many decades and almost 180 Oscar winners in its vast library, including 12 for best picture.
The studio is also home to two of the longest-running and most successful film franchises in cinematic history: James Bond and Rocky.
The Bond film series has earned almost US$7bn to date, according to MGM’s website.
MGM was formed in April 1924 and dominated Hollywood for the next three decades under Louis B. Mayer