Nation & World

MoviePass abandons price hike

But company will limit films to three a month

MoviePass, a U.S. movie ticket subscription app, is seen on a mobile phone in this photo illustration in New York, U.S., May 15, 2018. REUTERS/Mike Segar/Illustration
MoviePass, a U.S. movie ticket subscription app, is seen on a mobile phone in this photo illustration in New York, U.S., May 15, 2018. REUTERS/Mike Segar/Illustration

LOS ANGELES — Another day, another subscription plan from MoviePass.

The struggling ticket-buyer said Monday it will not raise its monthly subscription price to $14.95 — and will remain at $9.95 — in the wake of customer dissatisfaction.

But MoviePass is imposing new restrictions.

Beginning on Aug. 15, MoviePass customers will be able to see up to three movies a month, a drop off from the movie-a-day that the service once offered users.

The company said it also will give subscribers up to a $5 discount for any additional movie tickets they buy.

“Because only 15 percent of MoviePass members see four or more movies a month, we expect that the new subscription model will have no impact whatsoever on over 85 percent of our subscribers,” MoviePass said in a news release.

MoviePass has been running on fumes in recent weeks. The company is short on cash and its stock is languishing at less than a dime a share.

Moreover, it’s now facing increased competition from theater chains such as AMC, which has gotten into the subscription game with A-list, a service that gives customers access to three movies a week for $19.95.

In recent weeks, MoviePass has had widespread service outages and was forced to borrow an emergency $6.2 million to meet its financial obligations. It paid the loan back in full in a matter of days.

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MoviePass has had a tumultuous year. The service attracted some 3 million customers after it unveiled its low-price, movie-a-day offering some 12 months ago.

However, it has been dogged by questions about its business model. MoviePass pays full price for many of the tickets it buys from theater chains — meaning it effectively subsidizes its customers’ moviegoing.

It has long claimed it can make money by exploiting its users’ data and selling advertising.

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