Apple could be on the cusp of closing a lucrative, $1 billion acquisition under the terms of which it would obtain access to the vast film and music library of content belonging to India-based Eros Group, according to a report published Monday by The Economic Times. As one of the Middle-Eastern country’s largest movie producers, Eros counts upwards of 3,000 films and productions under its control, and is a subsidiary of the much larger content provider, Eros International, which trades under the ticker (EROS) on the New York Stock Exchange.
The Economic Times report cites sources familiar with the ongoing talks between Apple and Eros’ executives, and goes on to claim that the 10-figure acquisition could also grant Cupertino access to over the over 10,000 music titles owned by Eros International subsidiary, Eros Music. Furthermore, the deal could even see Apple acquire Eros’ digital content on demand platform, Eros Now, which has been dubbed the ‘Netflix of Bollywood’. As India’s premier supplier of digital content on demand, Eros Now currently has a base of 2.9 million paid subscribers and over 100 million registered subscribers in India.
Apple Seeks to Go Global with Content
While Apple has for long been rumored to be working behind-the-scenes with production studios and Hollywood executives in its pursuit to either create original content or provide existing content for the Apple TV, the company’s potential expansion into the Indian market could be even more financially rewarding — especially as Apple seeks to establish a name for itself in the burgeoning, previously untapped Indian market. Though the tech-giant is believed to be close to reaching a deal with Eros Group, the report also cautions that parallel discussions are currently underway with Amazon and Netflix, who sources note are also potential contenders to acquire the Eros library of content.
However if it ultimately goes through in Apple’s favor, the Eros deal would give the company exclusive rights to a huge vault of content, which could be made available to millions of new and existing subscribers in India and beyond. It’s merely the latest news related to Apple’s ongoing strategy in providing content for the Apple TV, however, although it could signify that the company’s planning to make big moves in the digital content space both at home and abroad.
According to the report, JM Financial is assisting Apple and Eros in orchestrating the deal, however when reached for comment on the news, spokespeople for all three firms declined to comment.