CBS has made a bold prediction to Wall Street that its stand-alone streaming services, CBS All Access and Showtime, will each amass 4 million subscribers by 2020.
CBS chief operating officer Joseph Ianniello walked analysts through his projection on Tuesday afternoon during the Eye’s investor-day presentation in New York. Ianniello told the Wall Streeters that the OTT services represent an $800 million incremental revenue growth opportunity for the company over the next five years.
CBS has yet to unveil subscriber data for All Access, which launched in October 2014, or the Showtime stand-alone service that bowed last July. “There will be a time when we share certain numbers with you,” Moonves said after he was pressed during the Q&A.
Ianniello said the five-year projections were rooted in the size of the potential market for the services and the growth trajectory of Netflix, Amazon and Hulu during the past few years. He said CBS keeps $8.25 per month per OTT subscriber to the advertising-free Showtime service and about $8.50 per month per sub from CBS All Access — $5 from the $5.99 monthly fee and another $3.50 generated by advertising.
Moonves and other execs continued to hint at the prospect of launching an ad-free version of All Access at a higher price point. And Moonves said they were considering a mini-bundle of CBS All Access and Showtime as a bundled option “at the bargain basement price of $12.99,” he said. “We’re working on an initiative like that,” he said.
CBS also raised its investor guidance on the revenue it expects to generate from retransmission consent fees for its stations and reverse-compensation paid to the network by its nearly 200 affiliate stations. The Eye had been telling analysts to expect $2 billion by 2020, but Ianniello raised the bar to $2.5 billion on Tuesday, citing the prevailing trends in its MVPD contracts and affiliation renewal deals.