There’s Some Dramatic Changes To The Moviepass Business Model

Though its been around for a few years now, I only actually ever heard of it myself a few short months ago when friends starting talking about their using it to see “as many movies as they could” each month. Since I didn’t see more than a handful of movies in a single year much less a month, I didn’t bother subscribing but I did think the idea was pretty cool. That being said there have been some drastic changes recently and a number of them were shared in the press release below. Read on.

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The Press Release:
MoviePass™, the nation’s premier movie theater subscription service and a majority-owned subsidiary of Helios and Matheson Analytics Inc. (Nasdaq:HMNY) (“Helios”), announces its new subscription plan and business model effective August 15, 2018. MoviePass’ new subscription plan retains its industry-low monthly subscription rate of $9.95 and at the same time creates a long-term and sustainable business model. The new plan will include many major studio first-run films. For our subscribers who have migrated to the new subscription plan, we are suspending Peak Pricing and Ticket Verification. MoviePass continues to be the most widely enjoyed theatrical subscription service in the United States, available at 91% of the theaters.

We have heard – and we have listened to – our MoviePass Community and we will not be raising prices to $14.95 a month. The new plan is focused on usage by the bulk of our subscribers who have historically used MoviePass to attend three movies or fewer a month. Additionally, the new plan addresses past misuses which imposed undue costs on the system, including ticket scalping, unauthorized card usage and other activities, which in the past necessitated the use of certain remedial measures that have sometimes been inconvenient for our subscribers.

Beginning August 15, 2018, MoviePass subscribers will transition to the new plan upon their renewal, which gives subscribers up to three movies a month for $9.95, and up to a $5.00 discount for any additional movie tickets. Because only 15 percent of MoviePass members see four or more movies a month, we expect that the new subscription model will have no impact whatsoever on over 85 percent of our subscribers.

“We are well aware that during our journey to innovate moviegoing — a form of entertainment that over time has become unaffordable and broken — we’ve encountered many challenges. However, any industry-wide disruption like MoviePass requires a tremendous amount of testing, pivoting, and learning,“ said Mitch Lowe CEO of MoviePass. “We discovered over several months of research that our customers value a low monthly price above nearly everything else, so we came together to create a plan that delivers what most of our loyal MoviePass fans want, and one that, we believe, will also help to stabilize our business model. While most of our loyal subscribers shared the passion for this new accessible movie experience and experimented fairly, the fact is that a small number have used our business model to a point where it was compromising the business’ long-term stability. As is true with any new company, we’ve evolved to accommodate what has become an unprecedented phenomenon. We are now creating a framework to provide the vast majority of subscribers with what they want most – low cost, value, variety, and broad availability – and to bring some moderation to the small number of subscribers who imposed undue cost on the system by viewing a disproportionately large number of movies. We believe this new plan is a way for us to move forward with stability and continue to revitalize an entrenched industry and return moviegoing to everyone’s financial reach.”

Monthly subscribers will be given the opportunity to subscribe to the new plan when their current plan comes up for renewal beginning August 15, 2018. Annual subscribers will not be affected by this plan until their renewal dates. Any subscriber can still cancel anytime.

“All along, we’ve known that we need to invest heavily to prove our business model and bring enough subscribers into the business to truly understand their usage patterns and allow us to leverage ancillary revenue opportunities,” said Ted Farnsworth, Chairman and CEO of HMNY. “However, one year and 3 million plus members later, it has become clear that a small number — only 15 percent — of the subscriber base has been stressing the system. We believe this new business model will immediately reduce our burn so we can refocus our efforts where they belong: making a permanent and positive change in this industry by creating an amazing theater-going experience and building a company that continues to benefit our nationwide community.”

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Piercing Ken Thoughts: So what I am reading here is that since a few of the subscribers taxed the working system that the rest of them must pay the price. Yeah I can see this lasting a whole lot longer (that’s sarcasm by the way). I’m rather glad that I didn’t sign up because like I said I see no more than five movies the entire year (in the cinema that is). The main stuff that I watch is on conventional cable and Netflix (which only costs $10.99 and lets you watch an unlimited amount of programming). Though its not cited in this press release, I recently saw some advertising for an AMC Cinemas service and one has to think that those theaters will be pushing their own thing as opposed to accepting something else in the immediate future. I sense that an exodus of subscribers is nigh and then this whole thing falls apart. It doesn’t sound appealing at all anymore but perhaps I am wrong. What do you folks who have been using it think? Chime in down below in the comments section since I am really curious.

Official Website: http://www.moviepass.com

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