• Online Ticket Purchase in China

Online Ticket Purchase in China (Photo : Getty Images)

Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba has strengthened its presence in the Chinese digital ticketing market with its latest acquisition of Beijing-based ticketing platform, Damai.cn.

Alibaba's new acquisition was announced by the company on Tuesday, March 21, according to a report by the Hollywood Reporter.

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In a statement sent to media, Alibaba said that Damai's acquisition "fits nicely into our 'health and happiness' strategy and forms a strategic part of the value chain in our media and entertainment business."

Damai, which was established in 2004, provides online ticketing services to movies, sporting events, concerts, live theater, and other events. The company has sold tickets to over 1.8 million events from 46 regional offices. It operates in 330 cities worldwide.

Although Alibaba had first invested in Damai in 2014, the financial details of the recent acquisition were not made public.

"Damai.cn will be a powerful platform to distribute our media content as well as expand our user reach and engagement," Alibaba said in the statement. "There will be extensive collaboration opportunities with our other entertainment assets including Alibaba Music, Alibaba Pictures and Youku."

The e-commerce giant also did not say if it will integrate Damai into Tao Piao Piao, the leading ticketing service of its film studio arm, Alibaba Pictures Group.

Reports said that Alibaba Pictures Group has been pouring huge sum of money to Tao Piao Piao as part of efforts to secure market share.

Last month, the company said in a profit warning to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange that its losses for 2016 could reach about $140 million, which it attributed mainly to marketing expenses for its mobile ticketing business.

"We believe the full acquisition this time will lead to even greater synergies," Alibaba added.

The growth of online ticketing industry surged as Internet companies across the world invest in platforms for Web and mobile ticket sales.

In China, more than half of Chinese moviegoers buy tickets online as a result of the price wars among Internet giants such as Tencent, Alibaba and Baidu, which compete for online movie ticket sales.

In the U.S., the majority of airline tickets is purchased digitally, while in Latin America, market ticketing platforms for cinemas and air travel are growing as more people are getting online and becoming more smartphone-savvy.