Streaming Services Showtime and Paramount+ Set to Merge
A new rebrand is in the works for Paramount after CEO Bob Bakish announced the company will merge Showtime and Paramount+. As part of the merger, Paramount+ will be renamed Paramount+ With Showtime, which will be led by Tom Ryan. Meanwhile, Chris McCarthy will continue to oversee network operations for Showtime, a move Bakish says will create opportunities for the company and for consumers.
Bakish said in a memo to employees that the changes would “unlock operational efficiencies and financial benefits” for Paramount. The memo shared by The Hollywood ReporterDidn’t confirm if the merger will result in layoffs or if there will be a pricing change for subscribers, only saying there would be updates in the coming weeks.
Bakic wrote in the memo, “While we are confident that this is the right move for our business, our consumers and our partners, we know this change brings uncertainty for the teams working on these brands and businesses.” He added: “We aim to be as transparent and thoughtful as possible during this process and we expect to announce more details in the coming weeks.”
The news comes a year after Paramount created a discount bundle offer for customers to subscribe to both Showtime and Paramount+ while keeping the channel and app separate. Paramount+ pricing currently starts at $4.99 per month and Showtime’s streaming service is $10.99 per month, while subscribers who bundle the two pay $11.99 per month.
Paramount says the upcoming change will result in cuts to TV shows on both platforms, which McCarthy says are attracting less than 10% of viewers. The company unveiled its first three canceled shows, which include the dramas Let the right one in, american gigolo, and the three-woman adaptation, starring Shailene Woodley.
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Reportedly other shows considered for the chopping block include Yellow jackets, Billions, Dexter and The Chi. McCarthy said Paramount has “already started discussions with our production partners about what content makes sense going forward and what shows have franchise potential.”
The merger comes as streaming services have been working to differentiate themselves and gain subscribers in an increasingly saturated streaming landscape. Disney was one of the first to introduce a bundle streaming option that combined Disney+Hulu and ESPN+, while Netflix offers a cheaper, ad-supported option last year.
Despite the tough competition out there and reports that some shows are already being cut, McCarthy said in the memo that by merging Showtime and Paramount+, the company will be able to reach a larger global audience and make a greater amount of content available to consumers.
https://gizmodo.com/streaming-services-showtime-paramount-billions-1850055919 Streaming Services Showtime and Paramount+ Set to Merge