CNN+, the streaming service launched by legacy news organization CNN, is getting shut down. As initially reported by Variety, the service will be terminated following the merger of Warner Bros. (CNN’s parent company) and Discovery. It’ll officially die on April 30th, just 32 days after it initially launched.
The $5.99/month service, providing additional news coverage as well as original content from CNN anchors and personalities, launched late last month to abysmal ratings. Axios reported at the time that just 150,000 users signed up. Subscriber growth then went sideways fast, as daily users fell to a staggering low of 10,000, according to CNBC. This left executives furious, searching for answers as to why the launch flopped the way it did.
While not going into great detail about the shutdown, CNN did provide some insights into the decision.
David Zaslav, the chief executive of Warner Bros. Discovery, has said that he wants to house all of the company’s brands under one streaming service. Some CNN+ programming may eventually live on through that service.
Hundreds of CNN+ staffers were notified of the decision in a meeting on Thursday afternoon.
Earlier in the day, incoming CNN CEO Chris Licht held a meeting with Andrew Morse, the executive vice president overseeing CNN+, and his top lieutenants, a person familiar with the matter said.
Morse, who championed the streaming service, will depart the company after a transition period.
From this quote, it certainly sounds like CNN+’s content may wind up on the single streaming product that Warner Bros. Discovery hopes to launch in the near future. It’s expected that HBO Max and Discovery+ may be consolidated into one service, and the original content from CNN could join the lineup instead of stand alone on a separate platform.