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Sony Buys Grouper for $65 Million

August 24, 2006

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Sony Corp., producer of the “James Bond” and “Spider-Man” films, bought video-sharing Web site operator Grouper Networks Inc. for $65 million, which may help the company promote and sell more movies and music.

Sony, which began selling feature films online as files this year, may add “premium content” and advertisements to the Grouper Web site, Sony Pictures Entertainment Chairman Michael Lynton said in a statement via PRNewswire today.

The company and some of its biggest media rivals are turning to online customers to help counter slowing DVD sales as faster Internet service spurs downloads. Sony, inventor of the Walkman portable music player, is also trying to win back customers it lost to iPod maker Apple Computer Inc.

“Many people in the Grouper community use Sony cameras to create videos and Sony Vaio computers and mobile devices to store and view them,” Lynton said in the statement. “It makes sense to complete the circle by having Grouper be a part of Sony Pictures Entertainment, which itself creates so much content.”

News Corp.’s Twentieth Century Fox movies, Time Warner Inc.’s Warner Bros., Walt Disney Co. and Lions Gate Entertainment Corp. have also started selling movies and shows online this year.

Quoted from: Bloomberg

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