LoveFilm, which is often regarded as the “Netflix (NSDQ: NFLX) of the Europe,” has struck a major deal with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios that gives its streaming rental service access to hundreds of classic movies and new home video releases. The deal comes as LoveFilm is trying to be seen as more than just a DVD renter, while MGM and other Hollywood studios are trying to make a real business out of online streaming.
Six-year-old UK-based LoveFilm’s big goal right now is to be seen as a general entertainment content provider, with its primary objective centered around being the go-to company for all things film. After that, it wants to be known for its game offerings. But like Netflix, the physical DVD is what brings in the money today and signing up MGM — and its 4,100 movies — will have immediate benefits as well as long-term advantages as digital streaming of movies becomes increasingly competitive.
LoveFilm has relied on major partnerships before. After it acquired Amazon’s DVD rental business in the UK and German markets over two years ago, Amazon (NSDQ: AMZN) subsequently became the company’s largest shareholder.