Netflix competitor iflix, Southeast Asia’s largest digital entertainment service, today announced the finalisation of a new round of “well in excess of $50 million” (precise amount was not disclosed) investment with a view to pushing the company towards a prospective IPO. The round was led by Fidelity International, a global asset manager and the round also featured a number of the region’s top media companies including Indonesia’s MNC, Japan’s Yoshimoto Kogyo, and South Korea’s JTBC. This complements the continued investment by the founders Catcha Group, and strategic shareholders Hearst, Sky and EMC, each of whom also participated in the round.
The company, which blends SVOD (iflixVIP) and AVOD (iflixFREE ) for a free to access tier, has focused primarily on local content with some selected Western/Hollywood content added to the mix. The Malaysia-based company last December that it sold off the remaining shares in its Africa business — Kwesé Iflix — to Econet Group, the telecom firm that is already an investor in the business, in order for the company to renew its focus on the Asian market.
Iflix say they aim to increase their active userbase which surpassed 17 million in May 2019, up from 9 million just six months earlier, and the offering is currently available to consumers in Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines and Thailand, with the service also covering Brunei, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Myanmar, Vietnam, Cambodia, Nepal, and Bangladesh.
iflix Co-Founder and Chairman, Patrick Grove, said, “We are incredibly proud to have Fidelity International cornerstone this latest round of funding, along with investments from all our major shareholders and some of the region’s most significant media companies. These investments are a clear affirmation of iflix’s business model and growth prospects, and strengthens our ties to some of the region’s largest providers of local content. We have a strong pipeline of new content and are excited to be making our most extensive ever content offering available to our millions of users across the region.”