Alibaba Wants to Make China’s Version of HBO and Netflix

Alibaba Group Holdings is planning to build a version of HBO and Netflix in China via a new service named Tmall Box Office, as it attempts to service over 600 million families that are craving additional content that is entertaining.

Tmall Box Office is expected to be available in two months through the set-top box of Alibaba as well as smart television that carry the same operating system, including those that are manufactured by the Haier Group, said the Alibaba president of digital entertainment Lui Chunning at a Shanghai press briefing on Sunday.

Some of content will be produced directly by the company while some will be purchased elsewhere, said Liu.

Alibaba is currently going through a buying spree as it attempts to compete with rival Tencent Holdings for the $5.9 billion China online video market.

Billionaire Jack Ma the chairman at Alibaba was visiting Hollywood earlier this year to see about acquiring more video content.

Liu said that the company wanted to create a whole new experience in family entertainment. He added that the goal is to become like HBO and Netflix in the U.S.

Alibaba is exploring its opportunities to build businesses that are e-commerce based on brands that film stars use in movies and shows, added Liu, adding that the company would be willing to work with Hollywood.

The crowdfunding platform of Alibaba called Yu Le Bao has raised more than 530 million yuan or $85.4 million and invested in over 24 projects.

The value of the online video market in China is estimated to close to triple to more than 90 billion yuan in 2018.

The media company Wasu Medial Holding in China that Ma backs has also held negotiations with Netflix as the video streaming service hopes to make a big expansion into China in May said the company.