The Saturday Evening Post has made thousands of issues of its weekly magazine, dating back as far as September 29, 1821, available online. For $15 a year, subscribers become members of the nonprofit Saturday Evening Post Society, receive print (six issues per year) and digital copies of the magazine with a 300-plus year history, complete access to the digital archives, and other membership perks. Subscribers can choose between a print + digital, print-only and digital-only subscriptions for $15 a year. The magazine currently has an estimated 268,000 paid subscribers, according to the Alliance for Audited Media, as cited by Folio magazine.
This Thanksgiving, Match Group (NASDAQ: MTCH) is grateful for subscribers, boasting 23 percent growth in average subscribers in the third quarter of 2018. The company now has 8.1 million total subscribers across all of its products including Tinder, Match, PlentyofFish, OKCupid and other dating sites. The company also reported double-digit growth for total revenue. The company’s total revenue for the third quarter was $444 million, representing growth of 29 percent year-over-year. This was driven by average subscriber growth and average revenue per user growth of 6 percent.
Voyage, a new subscription-based luxury travel platform and magazine, launched earlier this month. Published by Sienna Charles Travel, an elite travel agency catering to celebrities and executives, Voyage offers subscribers two seasonal issues of Voyage Magazine, a summer newspaper and biweekly digital newsletters. For $750 a year, subscribers will also receive a custom-designed destination guide for the location of their choice and invitations to exclusive Voyage-branded events.
In this week’s subscription news, Google’s Chrome does its part to stop mobile subscription scams, CollegeHumor launches its premium subscription service DROPOUT on Twitch, and Netflix is on pace to hit 10 million subscribers in the United Kingdom. Also this week, Amazon is giving all shoppers free shipping for holiday shopping purchases, Mindbody’s revenue grows but its stock value drops 18 percent, and Disney launches a Disney Princess subscription box.
You don’t have to have a brick-and-mortar store to make the most of one of the biggest shopping day of the year – Black Friday, November 23. Subscription companies are capitalizing on the opportunity with some of their own deals, not just attracting customers for a day for, hopefully, for months or years to come. Here are a few big Black Friday deals that other subscription companies can learn from and some deal-seeking consumers might want to check out:
Last week, marketing, sales and services platform HubSpot, Inc. (NYSE: HUBS) reported strong financial results for the third quarter ended September 30, 2018. Among the highlights were total revenue of $131.8 million, a 35 percent increase year-over-year, and subscription revenue of $125.5 million, also a 35 percent increase year-over-year. Total customers grew by 40 percent to 52,505, but total average subscription revenue per customer dropped 4 percent to $9,959 in the third quarter.
We’ve got good news, and we’ve got bad news. First, the good news. AMC Theatres has had a great response to its movie membership program. In its first four-and-a-half months, it has enrolled more than 500,000 new members in AMC Stubs A-List, exceeding the company’s first year goal. In addition, its AMC Stubs loyalty program now has more than 17 million subscribers, a huge jump from the 2.5 million mark two-and-a-half years ago.
Yesterday Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) announced that it has selected two cities for its new headquarters: New York City and Arlington, Virginia, ending a year-long search. These two sites will supplement the company’s primary headquarters based in Seattle. Amazon said it will invest $5 billion and create 50,000 more jobs with 25,000 employees in each new location. Amazon also announced that it has selected Nashville for a new Center of Excellence for its Operations, creating 5,000 new jobs.
Just weeks before Thanksgiving, Mickey Mouse and company have much to be grateful for, as The Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS) reports its fourth quarter and fiscal year 2018 results for the period ended September 29, 2018. Among the quarterly highlights are record revenues of $14.3 billion, a 12 percent increase, net income of $2.3 billion, a 33 percent increase, and diluted earnings per share of $1.55, a 37 percent increase.
One month after SiriusXM announced that it would acquire Pandora for $3.5 billion in an all-stock transaction, Pandora (NYSE: P) reported its third quarter financials. Highlights for the quarter included total revenue of $417.6 million, a 16 percent increase year-over-year, excluding revenue from Ticketfly and the company’s previous operations in Australia and New Zealand. Pandora also reported subscription revenue of $125.8 million, a 49 percent increase, and advertising revenue of $291.9 million. Pandora added 784,000 subscribers during the quarter, bringing it to 6.8 million total Pandora Plus and Pandora Premium subscribers. By comparison, at the end of its third quarter, SiriusXM had 33.7 million subscribers.
In this week’s subscription news, Digital First Media lays off 107 at its service center, FabFitFun surpasses $200 million in revenue and hits the 1-million-subscriber milestone, and Ubers tries to compete with Lyft with its own subscription service. Also this week, CNBC reports that ESPN+ will cost Disney big bucks this year as part of a long-term strategy, AMC Theatres beats Wall Street estimates, and IBM agrees to buy Red Hat.
Apple started the month off right with a strong earnings report on November 1 for its fiscal fourth quarter ended September 28, 2018. Among the highlights are quarterly revenue of $62.9 billion, a 20 percent increase year-over-year, and quarterly earnings per diluted share of $2.91, representing a 41 percent increase over earnings for the same period last year. International sales made up 61 percent of revenue for the quarter. Of particular note was the company’s Services revenue which hit an all-time high of $10 billion, an increase of $2.1 billion, or 27 percent, over the same period last year.
While other auto manufacturers like Toyota, Jeep and Lexus are jumping on the car subscription bandwagon, Cadillac is about to hop off. According to CNET and The Wall Street Journal, Cadillac will terminate its car subscription service by year end. The Book by Cadillac service is currently available in three markets: Los Angeles, Dallas and New York. The Wall Street Journal reports there were issues with the technology that supported the subscription service, creating extra customer service work and costs. Current subscribers will be notified and have 30 days to return their vehicles.
Despite the abrupt departure of CBS chairman, president and CEO Leslie Moonves, CBS Corporation (NYSE: CBS.A and CBS) reported record revenues and earnings in the third quarter of 2018. CBS had record revenue of $3.26 billion, a 3 percent increase over the same period last year. The company credits its record revenue, in part, to 79 percent growth in its digital initiatives, including its streaming video subscription services CBS All Access and Showtime, and retransmission revenue and fees from CBS Television Network affiliates.
Tribune Publishing Co. (NYSE: TRCO), a Chicago-based media company, is entertaining bids from Donerail Group, McClatchy Co. and AIM Media, reports Bloomberg. Tribune, which recently reverted to its previous moniker from the Tronc brand, owns media businesses in eight markets. Among its titles are its namesake The Chicago Tribune, New York Daily News acquired in September 2017, The Baltimore Sun, Orlando Sentinel, South Florida’s Sun-Sentinel, The Virginian-Pilot, and the Hartford Courant, among others. The company also owns Tribune Content Agency, the Daily Meal and is majority owner of BestReviews.