Cinedigm (NASDAQ:CIDM), a global media company that creates enthusiast streaming channels, recently announced record-breaking milestones for its subscription and ad-supported channel businesses.
In March 2021, Cinedigm’s total streaming viewer footprint reached approximately 23.8 million monthly active ad-supported viewers across Cinedigm’s digital networks distributed via linear Free Ad-supported TV (FAST) and Advertising Video on Demand (AVOD), up more than 208 percent year-over-year.
Additionally, the Company reported that total subscribers to the Company’s portfolio of subscription streaming services surpassed 640,000, up 574 percent year-over-year.
Additional Key Milestones and Facts*:
- Approximately 423 million minutes were streamed in March 2021, a new Company record, and up 305 percent year-over-year.
- Advertising requests increased 431 percent year-over-year.
- Approximately 96 percent of all streaming occurred in connected TV (“CTV”) environments. CTV is the most valuable ad inventory and in greater demand from advertisers when compared to desktop or mobile inventory.
- 16 streaming channels currently live, versus 5 live in March 2020, a 220 percent increase.
*All figures based on preliminary March 2021 performance data.
** YoY comparisons are between March 2020 and March 2021
“A year ago, we announced an aggressive strategy to rapidly expand our footprint of FAST linear streaming and AVOD channels, and to also rapidly expand our SVOD channel subscriber growth through M and A, distribution expansion, and partnerships,” said Erick Opeka, Chief Strategy Officer and President of Digital Networks for Cinedigm. “Today, we are pleased to show that, in a turbulent world for entertainment, the relentless focus of our incredible team is paying off in record growth in subscribers, free viewers, engagement, and ultimately, revenue. Our success is not going unnoticed, with new major brands and media companies approaching us regularly to assist them in developing streaming strategies that most effectively monetise their properties and attract new audiences, we continue to move upmarket with larger worldwide brand and channel opportunities. We remain steadfast in our growth plans through our M and A rollup strategy where we have added four new OTT channels, more than 15,000 films and TV episodes and a leading streaming technology company with a strong base in the fast-growing South Asian market in just the last five months.”
Updates on Recent and Upcoming Key Streaming Initiatives:
Given Cinedigm’s robust footprint of current and recently acquired services, the Company is actively focused on integrating the five acquisitions made since October 2020, as well as building and launching a variety of critical, recently announced products:
Fantawild Channel – Last year, the Company announced a deal to build and operate a children’s’ streaming service with Fantawild, one of the largest theme park operators in the world and the largest producer of Children’s animation in China. Cinedigm has completed the build-out of the channel and is currently testing the service with several strategic launch partners. Channel launch will occur shortly after satisfactory completion of this testing, which we anticipate will be completed in April.
Fandor Relaunch – Cinedigm acquired the assets of Fandor, a leading streaming service for film lovers, in late January 2021. The Company is actively integrating these assets and preparing for the beta relaunch of the service, which we expect to occur in late calendar Q2/early calendar Q3 2021. The Company is focused on migrating the service technology and expanding the content offering, distribution and partnerships in tandem with this relaunch. The service remains active and available to subscribers on a variety of platforms including Amazon Prime Channels, Roku, and more in the interim.
The Film Detective Integration – Cinedigm acquired the assets of The Film Detective (“TFD”), a leading streaming company and classic film library archive, in December 2020. The Company has been actively integrating the assets into Cinedigm since the acquisition closed and continues to expand the monetisation of those assets through Cinedigm’s distribution capabilities. TFD Founder and CEO Phil Hopkins is now President of both TFD and Fandor, and will leverage the extensive TFD library in Fandor’s relaunch.
Screambox Relaunch – Cinedigm acquired the assets of Screambox, a leading streaming service for horror fans, in February 2021. The Company is actively integrating these assets and preparing for the beta relaunch of the service, which we expect to occur in calendar Q3 2021. The Company is focused on migrating the service technology and expanding the content offering, distribution and partnerships in tandem with this relaunch. In the meantime, the service remains active and available to subscribers during the migration on all platforms.
NFT Initiatives – For over 20 years, Cinedigm has been at the forefront of driving major technological changes in the entertainment industry. The Company transformed the theatrical business by converting more than one third of US cinema screens from 35mm film to digital projection. Over a decade ago, the Company became the largest aggregator of digital content rights by helping more than 800 producers generate hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue through digital distribution to Apple, Amazon, Netflix, and more. Most recently, the Company has enabled partners like All3Media, American Public Media, The Bob Ross estate, and others develop commercial streaming channels. Our foray into NFT is a logical step for us, and a continuation of our successful efforts to commercialise emerging technology in the entertainment sector.
In March 2021, the Company announced that it was in active development of commercial NFT products. Our focus is to build a suite of products that will enhance the monetisation of our and our partner’s existing assets, and ultimately provide enhanced value to our overall streaming channel businesses. We plan to leverage’s Cinedigm’s extensive film and television content library, digital comics rights, deep distribution relationships with hundreds of producers, and our world class engineering capabilities to rapidly bring products to the market. The Company has four potential NFT products in development: a new, NFT-based film releasing label, an NFT-based consumer loyalty product for our streaming services, an NFT automation and distribution platform, and a marketplace product for video-based NFT collectibles. We are in the final phase of product development on several of these initiatives and expect to announce at least one product in April 2021.
FoundationTV Acquisition – The Company is currently in final diligence on this transaction. Barring any unforeseen issues arising from diligence, we expect this transaction to close within the next 30 days.
“I am proud of the efforts of Cinedigm’s team to not only execute on five M&A transactions a matter of months, but also conduct major channel and product launches and planning amidst an already aggressive growth trajectory,” said Opeka. “This reflects the extensive competitive advantage that Cinedigm holds in executing a highly complex and technical roll-up strategy.”