Tesco has acquired a majority stake in blinkbox, the movie steaming website, it has been announced.
Launched in 2008 by Michael Comish and Adrian Letts with financial backing from investors Arts Alliance, Eden Ventures and Nordic Ventures, blinkbox allows users to stream paid-for TV shows and films online, alongside free ad supported content.
Tesco today said it has bought an 80% stake in the company and that the acquisition places the UK supermarket giant in the next stage of the internet-driven revolution in home entertainment.
Richard Brasher, Tesco UK chief executive, commented: "The acquisition of blinkbox, together with a range of other services currently in development, means we can link physical purchase of a product to the building of digital collections in a new and seamless way.
“Working with the blinkbox team and our content partners, we will bring these compelling propositions to life for our customers."
Commenting on the deal, blinkbox chief executive Michael Comish said: "We are pleased that our partnership with Tesco allows us to bring the best in entertainment from our library of over 9,000 titles to even more people across the UK.
“This partnership represents another step forward, bringing the leading movie streaming service together with the UK's biggest retailer."
Claus Hoejbjerg Andersen from Nordic Venture Partners and Charles Grimsdale from Eden Ventures said in a joint statement: "We congratulate Tesco on the acquisition of blinkbox and are excited to be following the continued growth of the business under Tesco".
blinkbox is the UK's leading movie streaming service, offering thousands of titles streamed on the internet to around two million users each month.