Financial News

  • 27 August 2014, 7:13

Amazon Buys Streaming Site Twitch For $1bn

Amazon has bought gaming streaming site Twitch for $970m (584m).

The cash acquisition for the website - which lets gamers stream their gameplay for non-playing viewers to watch - is one of the largest in Amazon's history.

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos said: "Broadcasting and watching gameplay is a global phenomenon and Twitch has built a platform that brings together tens of millions of people who watch billions of minutes of games each month.

"Like Twitch, we obsess over customers and like to think differently, and we look forward to learning from them and helping them move even faster to build new services for the gaming community."

Twitch was founded just three years ago but has quickly grown into the most popular game streaming site on the web.

Twitch also hosts gaming events, and sells advertising to generate income.

One of the major selling points of the site is the length of time viewers stick around.

Each visitor averages 106 minutes each day, putting it in the same league of streaming video sites like Netflix.

Twitch is also integrated into Sony's PlayStation 4 and Microsoft's Xbox One, allowing gamers to easily play online.

The deal has already been approved by Twitch's shareholders, and it is expected to be closed by the end of the year.

Google had also shown interest in buying Twitch, according to reports, but the deal did not materialise.

Amazon is pushing to capture a large share of the streaming audience market.

The online retailing giant is already pressing hard to add users of its streaming movie service.

The costliest-ever takeover by Amazon was online shoe store Zappos, valued at $1.2bn (720m) in 2009 but partly in shares.

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