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Roku CEO: More than 50% of Our Customers Don’t Have a Pay TV Subscription

Yesterday in a fireside chat with Media Analyst Ben Swinburne at the Morgan Stanley TMT 2019 Conference, Anthony Wood, CEO of Roku, shared his thoughts on how vMVPDs like fuboTV, PlayStation Vue, Hulu Live TV, and Sling TV impact their business.

“vMVPDs are great customers for us. We distribute all of them on our platform. They generally all spend at some level on audience development,” shared Wood. “When we sign-up customers, we get a rev share like we do on all subscription services on our platform. And they encourage consumers to cut the cord.”

As part of their Q4 2018 earnings in late February, the company shared that over two-thirds of their platform revenue comes from ads and sponsorship on the Roku interface and The Roku Channel. They expect to reach $1 billion in revenue in 2019, by focusing on increasing monetization per user and scaling the number of households using the Roku platform. Some of this can be attributed to vMVPDs, which he said yesterday help “drive more engagement” which helps their platform business built on “monetizing the distribution of content.”

Wood went on to share that while they have customers that have a Roku and pay TV subscription, “we have customers - a little over half, who don’t have a pay TV subscription.” And he feels that those Roku’s best customers because they “they watch more Roku.” He thinks that vMVPDs are encouraging it because “if you’re not cutting the cord because of a particular sports team thats only available on a cable subscription. You can get that on a vMVPD.”

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