Paramount Hits Nearly 67M Global Streaming Subs as Paramount+ Grows to 46M – The Srdtf News

Paramount Hits Nearly 67M Global Streaming Subs as Paramount+ Grows to 46M – The Hollywood Reporter

Paramount Global reached nearly 67.0 million streaming subscribers worldwide as of the end of September, up from 63.7 million as of the end of June.

During the third quarter, it added 4.7 million global subscribers with that growth partially offset by the removal of Paramount+ subscribers in the Nordics where the company recently launched its streaming joint venture SkyShowtime with Comcast/Sky that replaced Paramount+ in the region.

The Paramount+ streaming platform added 4.6 million global subscribers in the July-September period to hit 46 million, compared with 43.3 million as of the end of June. But the streamer’s user base now does not include 1.9 million subscribers in the Nordics anymore who were migrated to SkyShowtime.

Among Paramount+ product helping with subscribers in the latest period were the likes of the NFL, films like Orphan: First Kill and Beavis and Butt-Head Do The Universe, as well as series as 1883 and Seal Team.

Hollywood giant Paramount, led by president and CEO Bob Bakish, revealed the latest subscriber data on Thursday as part of its quarterly earnings report, which saw its streaming gains exceed Wall Street estimates, while some of its financials fell below analysts’ expectations. 

Paramount’s free, advertising-supported streaming service Pluto TV also continued to grow its monthly active user (MAUs) in the latest period to 72.0 million after hitting 69.6 million as of the end of June. Pluto TV also grew total global viewing hours year-over-year in the “strong” double-digit percentage range.

Paramount’s direct-to-consumer (DTC) unit posted third-quarter revenue growth of 38 percent to $1.23 billion as subscription revenue jumped 59 percent year-over-year to $863 million, “principally reflecting paid subscriber growth on Paramount+” and advertising revenue increased 4 percent to $363 million. Paramount+ revenue jumped 95 percent year-over-year. Adjusted operating income before depreciation and amortization (OIBDA) in the DTC segment showed a loss that widened from $198 million to $343 million, “reflecting investments in content, marketing and international expansion.”

Blockbuster Top Gun: Maverick will stream on Paramount+ “by the end of the year,” the company confirmed on Wednesday, but didn’t detail a specific date for the U.S.

Wells Fargo analyst Steven Cahall had forecast Paramount+ net additions of 2.5 million for the third quarter, compared to a Wall Street consensus of around 3.4 million. “Our domestic Paramount+ net adds are 1 million as Paramount benefits from the Walmart+ deal that kicked off on Sept. 8 (Walmart+ subs need to opt in to be counted as Paramount+ subs) and some impact from the T-Mobile U.S. deal,” the analyst wrote in a report. “SkyShowtime (unconsolidated) launched in the Nordics and a small percentage of Paramount+ international subs were transitioned over. Paramount+ also launched in Italy on Sky Cinema.”

Filmed entertainment unit revenue rose 48 percent in the third quarter to $783 million amid gains in theatrical and licensing revenue, “led by the success of Top Gun: Maverick at the box office and in the digital home entertainment market.” Adjusted OIBDA in the film division swung to a $41 million profit from a year-ago loss of $24 million “reflecting the strong performance of Top Gun: Maverick.”

Paramount’s third-quarter earnings included charges related to restructuring and other corporate matters reached $169 million, up from $46 million in the comparable year-ago period. The firm detailed that this was “comprised of charges of $85 million for restructuring, consisting of severance costs associated with changes in management following the realignment of our operating segments and lease impairments; $77 million associated with litigation described … in our Quarterly Report …; and $7 million related to the suspension of operations in Russia.”

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