Tencent Tangos With Hollywood’s Skydance Media
Tencent Holdings Ltd. has made a strategic investment in U.S.-based Skydance Media, LLC, the companies announced Friday (Beijing time).
The investment is part of a partnership that will see Tencent co-financing Skydance films and marketing Skydance products in China, the statement said.
No amount was disclosed in the statement, although the Los Angeles Times reported that Tencent was buying a 5% to 10% stake in Skydance, citing a source close to the deal.
Skydance is currently involved in the production of sequels to the “Mission: Impossible” and “Terminator” franchises, and has also produced TV series for Netflix and Amazon.
Tencent’s Chief Strategy Officer James Mitchell said the partnership is expected to “provide Tencent with attractive content that we can share with China consumers,” and that Skydance had significant experience “in the action and science fiction genres, which are particularly popular in China.”
Tencent, which owns the popular WeChat messaging app and three major music streaming platforms, is well on its way to establishing a media empire spanning video games, feature films, and book adaptations.
Subsidiary Tencent Music Entertainment Group acquired a minority stake in Swedish music streaming service Spotify in December. Meanwhile, film production subsidiary Tencent Pictures said in September that it planned to make and distribute 20 feature films in 2018, as well as 23 other content projects, including video games and animated series.
The Skydance deal will be the latest of Tencent’s recent forays into Hollywood. In May, Youth Tencent Pictures, a Tencent Pictures offshoot targeting younger audiences, secured backing from Fox International Productions for a series of online animated films. Tencent Pictures has also backed foreign films like “Wonder Woman” and “Kong: Skull Island.”
Tencent’s reach even extends into popular literature. China Literature, Tencent’s online publishing unit that raised HK$8.33 billion ($1.07 billion) in a heavily oversubscribed initial public offering in November, sees book-to-screen adaptations as a major future revenue source for the company.
Contact reporter Teng Jing Xuan (firstname.lastname@example.org)
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