Amazon.com, Inc. today announced that it has reached an agreement to acquire the remaining shares in LOVEFiLM International Limited
LOVEFiLM is a European subscription entertainment service which
combines the benefits of online DVD and games rental-by-post as well
as streaming films and TV shows instantly over the internet to PCs,
internet enabled TVs and Playstation 3. LOVEFiLM operates today in
the UK, Germany, Sweden, Norway and Denmark. Amazon already has a
significant minority shareholding in LOVEFiLM and does not itself
operate any similar business in Europe.
The acquisition is subject to customary closing conditions, including
regulatory approvals, and is expected to close in the first quarter
Lovefilm, which began as a pure DVD rental company in 2002, has more
than 1.4 million members around the UK as well as significant
interests in Germany and Scandinavia.
For a monthly fee, subscribers can receive movies and TV shows
through the post or watch them over a broadband internet connection.
AmAzon.com's move could help guard against the possibility that US
rival Netflix, which has more than 16 million subscribers, could
invade the British market. Last year Netflix suggested that it was
looking to expand internationally, and is believed to be targeting