Showtime’s 8-month-old stand-alone streaming service is growing “faster than we ever expected,” the CBS operation’s CEO David Nevins said today as part of his sales pitch at the company’s Investor Day gathering. While he didn’t give a subscriber number, he says it’s growing significantly “virtually every single week” now that Showtime can go after viewers who don’t first pay about $100 a month to subscribe to cable or satellite.
The streaming service is targeting about 13 million broadband-only homes. He also noted that Showtime’s agreements to offer the online programming as an extra-pay option for Amazon, Hulu and Sony’s PlayStation Vue “really differentiates us” by offering access to “tens of millions of customers. That’s something our competition has chosen not to do.”
Meanwhile, Showtime’s traditional service tries to boost its take rate among about 75 million pay TV subscribers who don’t already buy it.
The entire business has “never been stronger,” he added, with subscriptions doubling during the past decade to about 24 million — not including the streaming business. Nevins vowed to “maintain and improve the high [profit] margins you’ve come to expect.”
He attributes much of the growth to improvements in programming including originals such as Billions, Shamelsss and The Affair, which he says is “the core of our strength.” The company owns about 80% of its series, he says, giving CBS “almost infinitely expanding windows for monetization.”
Nevins gave attendees previews of what he calls “buzzworthy shows” including Cameron Crowe and J.J. Abrams’ Roadies, Jim Carrey’s I’m Dying Up Here and David Lynch’s Twin Peaks which is due in the first half of 2017.