MoviePass, the movie theater subscription service that is selling a majority stake to Helios and Matheson Analytics Inc. (HMNY), announced Thursday (Sept. 14) that it now has more than 400,000 paying monthly subscribers, adding them in the past 30 days alone.
In a news release, the company said that on Aug. 14 it had less than 20,000 subscribers, but thanks to a new $9.95 a month MoviePass subscription plan, it has seen a huge uptick in the number of subscribers. What’s more, in a company poll of 30,000 new subscribers, 75.3 percent said the only reason they went to the movies was because they were subscribers to the service, which offers unlimited access to movies being shown in theaters for a monthly fee. The company also said theaters participating in the service had seen an attendance increase of more than 400 percent from MoviePass subscribers.
In the press release, the company said it expects to have 2.5 million more paying subscribers during the next 12 months, and expects to keep 2.1 million of the additional paying customers at the end of the 12-month period. “MoviePass is the ‘all-you-can-eat’ movie theater experience,” said Mitch Lowe, co-founder of Netflix, former president of RedBox, and current CEO of MoviePass. “Though expensive for the company in the short-term, it’s a significant benefit and more convenient for customers. With MoviePass, there [are] no movie ticket prices to think about – going to the movies will become an everyday experience rather than an occasional treat.”
MoviePass is out to bring date night back to theaters with a model that doesn’t break the bank. In what equates to a huge movie theater discount, it is charging members a monthly subscription fee that gives them free rein to see unlimited standard 2-D movies each month, even as often as once a day. The goal? To turn once-a-month moviegoers (about 30 million people in the U.S.) into twice- or thrice-a-month visitors, and to drive more regular business from the majority of people who only go to the movies approximately four times a year. So far, it seems to be working.
“We’re bringing millennials back to the theater,” said Ted Farnsworth, chairman and CEO of Helios and Matheson, which last week acquired a majority stake in MoviePass. In a recent interview with PYMNTS’ Karen Webster, Farnsworth said that up to this point, about three-quarters of MoviePass subscribers have been millennials.