Matt Blank, interim CEO of AMC Networks, said the company has “no plans” for ad-supported tiers for its streaming services, which include Shudder, Acorn TV, and AMC+. meeting was the first to report Blank’s comments, which were part of AMC’s quarterly conference call with analysts.
Blank’s most provocative statement on the subject came when he seemingly eclipsed other streaming services like Netflix — without naming them. Faced with massive subscriber losses and reportedly negatively impacted results by password sharing, Netflix came up with the idea of offering an ad-based model to turn things around in late April. Blank said: “It’s funny when you hear that another big player is having problems… suddenly one ad tier will solve all the problems? We don’t think that’s true, but we’ll definitely be monitoring it.”
AMC Networks CFO and COO Christina Spade declined to talk specifically about the company’s streaming earnings, but said the entertainment company generally looks at all parts of its brands together when making decisions. However, Spade said that AMC Networks expects to add about 400,000 subscribers in the second quarter of 2022 — including upcoming international expansion.
Blank added that AMC has no immediate plans to increase program spending to attract more subscribers. With AMC shows like Better Call Saul in their final seasons, costs are rising as showrunners pull out all the stops — which means producing more expensive content. But Blank notes that once shows close, they’ll be replaced by newcomers, which by definition will cost less.
AMC Networks ended the first quarter with 9.5 million subscribers after ending 2021 with just over 9 million.
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