MoviePass is cutting its prices again in an attempt to attract customers to its subscription service. The controversial company, which aspires to be the Netflix of moviegoing, is offering a package deal of $6.95 a month.
It initially cost just under $10 for users to see a movie-a-day for a month; both offerings are less than the cost of a single movie ticket in markets such as Los Angeles and New York City. The average ticket price across the country in 2017 was $8.97.
MoviePass said the lower pricing is only available for new subscribers. The company has attracted more than 2 million customers since slashing its prices last summer from roughly $50 a month. But it’s made enemies in the process. Theater chains such as AMC have derided MoviePass’ business model as unsustainable. The service pays full price for each ticket its customers buy, subsidizing their multiplex visits. Though MoviePass hasn’t released its financial information, industry observers suspect it is operating at a significant loss.
However, the service says it is collecting invaluable data on its customers. It believes it can sell that to theater chains or studios, enabling it to eventually turn a profit. Right now, like Netflix and Amazon before it, MoviePass is more focused on building market share than it is in turning a profit.
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In an announcement, MoviePass said it was “diversifying its revenue streams” through marketing agreements with studios and film companies, and partnerships with theater chains. It did not provide specific information about those associations. MoviePass has also started acquiring pics. It partnered with The Orchard to buy the heist drama “American Animals” out of the Sundance Film Festival.
“Our vision has always been to make the moviegoing experience easy and affordable for anyone, anywhere,” said MoviePass CEO Mitch Lowe in a statement. “With the current growth and support that we’ve seen within the last several months, our studio and exhibitor revenues, and other marketing partnerships have motivated us to lower the price once again, offering movie lovers greater access to MoviePass.”
Last summer, MoviePass sold a majority stake to Helios and Matheson Analytics Inc., a publicly traded data firm. At the time, the company said it had roughly 20,000 subscribers. MoviePass’ new plan also carries a processing fee of $6.55, which does make it more expensive than the sticker price.