Lionsgate, MGM Invest in Tubi TV, Add Catalog Titles to Free Video Platform

San Francisco-based Tubi TV just got a big boost in its efforts to become a major streaming destination for free, ad-supported movies: Tubi TV corporate parent Adrise has closed a new $6 million round of financing, with Lionsgate and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer joining new investor Cota Capital as well as existing investors Foundation Capital, Bobby Yazdani, Mark Amin, and Noosheen and Zod Nazem.

The two studios aren’t just pouring money into Adrise: Both have also struck licensing agreements that will bring hundreds of catalog titles to Tubi TV, including movies like “Midnight Cowboy,” “Crash,” “Rain Man,” “The Hurt Locker,” “Pink Panther,” “Fargo,” and “American Psycho.”

Adrise also announced Thursday that former Fox Television chairman and current Phase 2 Media CEO Sandy Grushow has joined the company’s board of directors.

Adrise originally launched in 2011 with the goal of building ad-supported streaming channels for a number of partners. But in 2014, the company took its fate into its own hands with the launch of Tubi TV, a free and ad-supported streaming service that’s now available on a number of streaming devices, including Chromecast, Roku, Fire TV, Xbox and the new Apple TV.

At launch, Tubi TV offered viewers around 20,000 titles, with quite a few B-Movies being part of the catalog — a fact that the service has embraced with its own Grindhouse category. But more recently, Tubi TV has started to make inroads with major studios: In May, Adrise announced a licensing deal with Paramount that has allowed it to add some well-known classics, including titles like “Top Gun,” “Basic Instinct,” “Total Recall” and “Star Trek: The Final Frontier”.

SEE MORE: Sony’s Crackle Tries to Look and Feel More Like Traditional TV

Titles typically rotate in and out, but Tubi TV now has a total of 40,000 movies and TV show episodes available for viewing, and Adrise Director of marketing Kevin Leu said in an interview with Variety that views on the platform have grown 400 percent within the last 12 months.

Leu went on to describe the growing interest in Tubi TV as part of a larger consumption trend towards unbundled and ad-supported online services. “Over the last six months, almost a million people have unsubscribed from pay TV,” he said, adding: “People are tired of paying.”

Popular on Variety

More Digital

  • Comcast Xfinity Flex

    Comcast Drops $5 Monthly Fee for Xfinity Flex Video-Streaming Set-Top for Broadband Customers

    Comcast will hand out one free set-top box for broadband subscribers to access Xfinity Flex, its video-streaming product for internet-only customers, as it looks to punch up the value of its high-speed internet business. Brian Roberts, Comcast’s chairman and CEO, announced the new strategy at Goldman Sachs’ Communacopia conference Wednesday in New York. “One of [...]

  • Facebook Portal TV

    Facebook Announces $149 Portal TV Device, 2 New Portal Smart Displays

    Facebook wants you to put a camera into your living room: The company officially unveiled its Portal TV device Wednesday that brings video chatting, augmented reality (AR) and Facebook Watch to any TV set. In addition, the company also unveiled two new Portal smart display devices that are aggressively priced to grow the company’s home [...]

  • Milford Sound, Fiordland National Park, South

    Amazon’s ‘Lord of the Rings’ Series to Shoot in New Zealand

    Amazon Studios has set New Zealand as the location for its upcoming series production of “Lord of the Rings.” Pre-production has started, and production on the series will begin in Auckland in the coming months. “We knew we needed to find somewhere majestic, with pristine coasts, forests, and mountains, that also is a home to [...]

  • Google Assistant example

    How Google Found Its Voice

    A few years back, Google was actively exploring whether it should launch a male counterpart to Amazon’s female Alexa voice assistant. “When we first launched the Google Assistant, we intended to use a male voice, just to be different,” Google Assistant product manager Brant Ward recently recalled. However, at the time, text-to-speech technology was still [...]

  • Podium Publishing Taps Scott P. Dickey

    Podium Publishing Taps Scott P. Dickey as Chief Executive Officer

    Independent audiobook publisher Podium Publishing has selected veteran media executive Scott P. Dickey as chief executive officer. Greg Lawrence, former CEO and co-founder,  remains as Podium’s publisher and a member of the board of directors. As CEO, Dickey will set and implement the day-to-day and long-term marketing, production and business strategy for the company as [...]

  • "The Stockholm Syndrome" - Pictured: Rajesh

    Inside the Blockbuster $600 Million 'Big Bang Theory' Streaming Deal With HBO Max

    As one of TV’s most popular shows of the past 20 years, “The Big Bang Theory” was sure to command a huge price when the streaming rights were finally shopped in a red-hot market for iconic comedies with large libraries. But “Big Bang Theory” wasn’t shopped widely on the open market before the streaming pact [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content