Indian online payment commerce company Paytm has acquired a majority stake in event ticketing platform Insider.in, creating direct competition at the top of India’s online ticket market.
Under the proposed agreement, Chinese conglomerate Alibaba-owned Paytm is set to pay $5.42m (£4.3m/€4.86m) with the investment being split between Insider.in and its parent company OML Entertainment.
BookMyShow, the leading Indian ticketing platform, now looks set to face direct competition from Paytm with both companies facilitating event and movie ticketing. BookMyShow said in January that it sold about 100 million tickets in 2016, while Paytm claimed to have booked more than 25 million tickets through 3,500 screens in more than 550 cities.
A Paytm spokesperson told India’s Ken news website: “Vast majority of Indians haven’t bought their movie tickets online. Given Paytm’s massive footprint, we see this as a big opportunity to bring more and more users and theatres online.
“Paytm movies has emerged as the country’s fastest growing online movie ticketing platform within a year of launch. We are now regularly ticketing more than 20 per cent of total box office for all major releases.”
Reports suggest Paytm may further invest $30m into Insider.in to get its foot in the door of the events business. BookMyShow only entered the events market last month, but said it planned to shift its focus away from the cinema industry, and turn its sights to live events and content.
During the announcement, BookMyShow chief executive Ashish Hemrajani said in an interview, according to the Economic Times: “I love it when competition spends, that means that they are not being intelligent about what they are doing. We are sitting at a time when we have seen enough people spend money and what their condition is.”