Although TV/movie production and distribution company Lionsgate suffered continued revenue declines in its most recent reporting period -- due to movie theaters' slow re-openings -- its Starz streaming platform continues to post key subscriber gains.
Global streaming subscribers for the Starz brand grew 69% to 16.7 million subscribers year-over-year, exceeding the company’s forecast of 13 million to 15 million. In the U.S., Starz has 10 million streaming subscribers.
By 2025, Lionsgate projects Starz will hit 60 million global subscribers.
Currently, streaming subscribers are still with Starz long-term, mostly due to scheduling of returning shows, like “Power,” “P-Valley” and “Hightown.”
Jeff Hirsch, president/CEO of Starz, said during an earnings phone call with analysts on Thursday: “We are moving subscribers from one show to the next to the next. This quarter, we saw churn at an all-time low. As we get into our robust slate, it will come down to single digits.”
From of its Starz brand TV platforms -- streaming and live, linear TV networks -- Lionsgate recorded 29.5 global subscribers. Total revenue from Lionsgate media networks unit grew 12% to $401 million.
Lionsgate's motion-picture business sank 26% to $292.4 million from movie-theater closures due to the pandemic. Television production was also affected, with revenue sinking 18% to $210.7 million.
Overall for Lionsgate's fiscal fourth-quarter period ending March 31, there was a 25% revenue decline to $876.4 million.
Net loss narrowed slightly to $41.8 million from $48.9 million in the same year-ago period.
For its fiscal year ending March 31, revenue was down 16% $3.27 billion. Lionsgate stock closed 1.3% higher to $18.68 on Thursday.