- MoviePass, the embattled movie-ticket-subscription service, is shutting down on Saturday, its parent company, Helios and Matheson Analytics, announced on Friday.
- Helios and Matheson said its efforts to recapitalize the MoviePass business, which has lost hundreds of millions of dollars since Helios and Matheson took ownership in 2017, had “not been successful.”
- Helios and Matheson said it would explore a sale of MoviePass, along with its other assets Moviefone and MoviePass Films.
- MoviePass has recently laid off staffers, and Moviefone has suspended its freelancers, sources close to the companies told Business Insider.
- Read more: The definitive story of how a controversial Florida businessman blew up MoviePass and burned hundreds of millions
MoviePass will shut down on Saturday, its parent company, Helios and Matheson Analytics, announced on Friday.
Helios and Matheson said efforts to recapitalize the embattled movie-ticket subscription service had “not been successful to date” and that it was “unable to predict if or when the MoviePass service will continue.”
MoviePass surged in popularity in 2017 after Helios and Matheson bought the service and drastically lowered the price. But it burned through hundreds of millions of dollars and failed to find a business model that didn’t lead to massive losses.
During MoviePass’ collapse, CEO Mitch Lowe locked some subscribers out of their accounts and used other tactics to try and keep the company running, according to multiple inside sources who Business Insider spoke with during a four-month investigation into the company’s practices, which was published in August.
MoviePass, along with Moviefone and MoviePass Films, which are all owned by Helios and Matheson, will be up for sale, the company said on Friday.
Helios and Matheson’s “board of directors has formed a strategic review committee, composed entirely of the company’s independent directors, to identify, review, and explore all strategic and financial alternatives for the company, including a sale of the company in its entirety,” the company said.
This announcement came as Business Insider waited for comment from Helios and Matheson on a story that detailed the company’s attempts to sell MoviePass and Moviefone and its continued layoffs.
The Friday before the Labour Day holiday weekend, the Moviefone editor Drew Taylor sent out an email to the site’s freelancers informing them that “effective immediately all freelancing is suspended.” The email, obtained by Business Insider, went on to say that Moviefone would make sure “everybody gets paid what they’re owed as soon as possible,” but multiple sources said some freelancers had not been paid for months.
To read Business Insider’s inside look at what’s been going on recently at MoviePass and Moviefone, read our full story on Business Insider Prime.
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