When you first hear about MoviePass’s business model — charging subscribers $10 a month to see a movie every day, with tickets the company buys full-price from theater chains — your initial impression is likely to be something along the line of, How in the world is that sustainable? And indeed, the company has always been honest about the fact that, until its subscriber base starts to resemble that of a medium-sized gym chain or big theater chains start giving them a cut of the profits (or both!), it is and will keep losing gobloads of money.
Now, though, we know exactly how much money that is: According to Variety, financial documents from MoviePass’s parent company Helios & Matheson show the data firm lost $150 million in 2017, most of that attributed to its acquisition of MoviePass in August. The size of the loss, auditors say, “raises substantial doubt about the company’s ability to continue as a going concern.” MoviePass maintains that it is able to raise enough money to survive its astronomical burn rate, and tells Variety it expects to have a positive cash flow in 2019 thanks to ad sales and the money it makes selling subscribers’ data.