Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba plans to invest $200 million in photo messaging app Snapchat in a funding deal valuing the firm at $15 billion, Bloomberg News reported.
It said the capital injection would happen outside of a planned funding round for Snapchat. Bloomberg said the firm has been in talks to raise $500 million in that financing round that could value it at $16 billion-$19 billion.
The companies didn’t comment, the report said. Alibaba couldn’t be reached.
Snapchat has recently moved into professionally produced content with Literally Can’t Even, a comedy starring Sasha Spielberg and Emily Goldwyn, the writing partner daughters of Steven Spielberg and producer John Goldwyn.
The weekly series can be found on the Snap Channel on Discover, a curated platform launched by the firm in January with partners including ESPN, CNN and Comedy Central.
Alibaba, led by chairman Jack Ma, recently bought an 8.8 percent stake in Enlight Media, one of China’s leading private film and TV companies, for $380 million, the latest acquisition in its strategy of expanding in the entertainment business.
Alibaba spent over $3 billion in the entertainment industry last year, and the cash-rich company went window shopping for content and even potential acquisitions in Hollywood last year, but has yet to make a major move there.
This article was first published by The Hollywood Reporter.