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Lionsgate, Airtel Partner for Lionsgate Play Launch in India

Zacks Equity Research

Lions Gate Entertainment LGF.A and Starzplay recently partnered with India-based telecom company, Bharti Airtel to launch Lionsgate Play in India.

Lionsgate Play will grant Airtel customers access to Lionsgate’s portfolio of movies and will be available on the Airtel Xstream app and web platforms.

Moreover, the content will be available in multiple local languages and span various genres.

The platform’s initial offerings include major franchises like Twilight Saga and Hunger Games as well as Academy Award winning movies like La La Land. Its offerings also include recent hits like American Assassin, The Spy Who Dumped Me, Robin Hood and Saban’s Power Rangers among others.

The deal is likely to aid Lionsgate in making use of Airtel’s reach, brand recognition and distribution expertise to successfully penetrate the rapidly growing streaming market in India, which per Statista, is expected to witness CAGR of 11.4% between 2019 and 2024. Further, user penetration rate for 2019 is pegged at 3.9%, which is likely to be 5.5% by 2024.

Lions Gate Entertainment Corp. Price and Consensus

 

Lions Gate Entertainment Corp. Price and Consensus

Partnerships to Expand International Footprint

This latest partnership is part of Lionsgate’s efforts to expand its presence in international markets and drive top-line growth.

Notably, the company has partnered with Amazon AMZN to bring its recently released and upcoming theatrical feature films to prime video customers in the UK.

Additionally, Lionsgate backed Globalgate, partnered with TF1 Studio, a leading France-based media company, to produce and distribute local-language films and series in the country.

These endeavors have greatly strengthened the company’s International footprint and are expected to boost top-line growth.

Notably, in second-quarter fiscal 2020, Lionsgate generated revenues of $983.5 million, up 9.2% from the year-ago quarter.

Increasing Competition to Hurt Profitability

The company is facing stiff competition from the likes of Disney DIS and Comcast CMCSA.

Further, the increasing cost of production and marketing of motion pictures is likely to hurt the profits and force the company to depend more on lower revenue generating options such as home video and television.

LFG.A currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

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