Digital payments major Paytm has said it has acquired Orbgen Technologies, the firm that operates Chennai-based online ticketing platform TicketNew. Though Paytm has kept under wraps the financial details about the transaction, industry sources have pegged the deal size somewhere between $30 million and $40 million. Sources said that Paytm has bought out the majority stake held by Alibaba Pictures, an arm of China’s internet giant Alibaba. Alibaba Pictures had acquired a majority stake in TicketNew on June 5, 2017 for an undisclosed sum, making its first acquisition outside China in the internet ticketing industry.
Paytm said the deal comes through at a time when its entertainment division has recently increased the online penetration by more than 50% and has become the country’s fastest growing entertainment ticketing platform. Through this acquisition, Paytm is seeking to connect TicketNew partner cinemas to its more than 300 million customers and further invest in helping grow their occupancy and revenues. In 2016, Paytm had entered the events ticketing space and since then has emerged as one of the largest players in India. Last year in July, it had also acquired a majority stake in www.insider.in, an events ticketing platform, in bid to cash in on the growing live entertainment space in the country.
Madhur Deora, chief financial officer, and SVP, Paytm said, “We are on a mission to be the one-stop destination for all movie and entertainment ticketing needs. It is our goal to be the leader in every city in India and offer the opportunity to all cinema partners to reach Paytm’s customers. TicketNew founders have built a fantastic business in South India and share the same partnership mindset as Paytm. With this acquisition, we have taken a step closer to our goal of making Paytm Entertainment the No 1 player in this space.”