According to a Reuters report, Alibaba Group (BABA) plans to create its own media streaming platform modeled directly on Netflix (NFLX) and HBO.
At the Shanghai Film Festival on Sunday, Alibaba digital chief Patrick Liu said the new service, which is expected to be launched in about two months, would be called ‘TBO’, or Tmall Box Office, and run premium on-demand video content from China as well as foreign content. Alibaba even has plans to create its own in-house programs, as Netflix did with House of Cards.
“Our mission, the mission of all of Alibaba, is to redefine home entertainment,” Liu told reporters. “Our goal is to become like HBO in the United States, to become like Netflix in the United States.”
About 90% of TBO’s content will be paid for, either by monthly subscription or on a pay-per-view basis, Liu added. The rest will be free.
It remains unclear how TBO, which will go up against the likes of Tencent, Baidu’s (BIDU) iQiyi and Sohu.com (SOHU), would fit with Youku Tudou, one of China’s biggest video streaming platforms in which Alibaba bought a 16.5% stake last year.