MGM has nearly a century of filmmaking history and complements the work of Amazon Studios, which has primarily focused on producing TV show programming. Through this acquisition, Amazon would empower MGM to continue to do what they do best: great storytelling.
This marks Amazon’s second-largest acquisition to date, only eclipsed by its purchase of Whole Foods in 2017 for about $13 billion.
Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, and other media sources had mentioned in December that MGM was searching for a buyer.
Variety said word of Amazon’s interest in the firm began to surface over the weekend. Information became more concrete late Monday regarding a potential Amazon-MGM deal in the $7 billion-to-$10 billion range.
“MGM has a vast catalog with more than 4,000 films—”12 Angry Men”, “Basic Instinct”, “Creed”, James Bond, “Legally Blonde”, “Moonstruck”, “Poltergeist”, “Raging Bull”, “Robocop”, “Rocky”, “Silence of the Lambs”, “Stargate”, “Thelma & Louise”, “Tomb Raider”, “The Magnificent Seven”, “The Pink Panther”, “The Thomas Crown Affair”, and many other icons—as well as 17,000 TV shows—including “Fargo”, “The Handmaid’s Tale”, and “Vikings”—that have collectively won more than 180 Academy Awards and 100 Emmys,” said Mike Hopkins, Senior Vice President of Amazon Prime Video and Amazon Studios in a statement Wednesday morning.
“It has been an honor to have been a part of the incredible transformation of Metro Goldwyn Mayer. To get here took immensely talented people with a true belief in one vision. On behalf of the Board, I would like to thank the MGM team who have helped us arrive at this historic day,” said Kevin Ulrich, Chairman of the Board of Directors of MGM in Wednesday’s statement.
At the present time, Amazon has more than 200 million Prime members internationally. Jeff Bezos has told investors that about 175 million of those have streamed Amazon Prime Video content over the past year.
According to Variety, Amazon spent about $11 billion on TV shows, movies, and music for Amazon Prime services in 2020, an increase of about 40 % over 2019.
The acquisition comes ahead of Amazon’s annual shareholder’s meeting, which is scheduled for noon today, Eastern time.
The transaction’s completion is subject to regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions.