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SHOWTIME’s subscriptions increase by 11%

Television industry trade publication is reporting that SHOWTIME’s subscription base rose by 11% during the fourth quarter of 2007.

The news is very interesting because CBS’s profit fell by 19% to $271 million last quarter. SHOWTIME is owned by CBS so it is surging upward during a time where many of the company’s other properties were on the decline.

Variety does not offer any analysis for the reason in SHOWTIME’s growth in subscribers, but it would be hard to discount the premium-based network’s decision to begin televising EliteXC events.

  • Brandt says:

    I know very little about broadcasting – did the writers strike affect the programming on Showtime?

  • FullMetal says:

    *cough*What about the second season of Dexter*cough*

  • Evan says:

    Dexter, Brotherhood, Weeds, The Tudors and Californication helped as much as EliteXC if not more.

  • Evan says:

    Also another thing to consider is that Showtime is heavily packaged and promoted along with HBO. If I cancel Showtime my bill will actually go up if I keep HBO for some reason.

  • truth says:

    I subscribed just for elitexc

  • Evan says:

    “I subscribed just for elitexc”

    I am sure a lot of people did. I am simply saying Showtime has completely turned their product over and now has better TV shows than HBO and they are heavily promoted as part of premium packages.

  • cyphron says:

    Well, for me, I added Showtime for the upcoming Shamrock/CungLe event.

  • Derek B. says:

    EliteXC is def. alot more exciting then ShowBox or whatever it’s called. I’ve been watching alot of the boxing re-runs on showtime and there has been alot of lackluster performances.

    Elite seems to have alot of quick 1st round fights which seem to bring alot of attention.

  • jaydog says:

    He gets Showtime for the fights and she gets it for the L-Word.
    The best of both worlds, literally.
    Seriously though. The L-Word is really popular.
    Whereever Showtime gets its money, they’ll have more to spend on the EliteXC promotion, which is good.

  • Brent says:

    “…but it would be hard to discount the premium-based network’s decision to begin televising EliteXC events.”

    I’ll discount it – Sopranos ended on HBO, Showtime premiered a bunch of creator controlled shows ala HBO, Comcast and other carriers all did lower priced promos for premium addons like Showtime, etc…

    I like EliteXC, but it’s not responsible for the subscription increase.

  • bjjdenver says:

    Showtime has some really good programming, plus a variety of channels with a wide selection of movies.

    HBO has Entourage.

    If it wasn’t for Entourage I would drop HBO. They show the same movie every 6 hours and their programming has really slipped.

    The rub? If HBO added the UFC or something, my view would change dramatically.

  • bjjdenver says:

    Another thing…

    I never understood the rumored negotiations between CBS and UFC. CBS owns Showtime who is invested in EXC/ProElite, so why not just have that programming on CBS?

    The only thing I can come up with is UFC’s name marketability, but even so, it seems as though they would be competing within their own company.

  • ekc says:

    i got shotime for EliteXC and This American Life… that show is amazing.

  • Evan says:

    “HBO has Entourage.”

    Yeah and once The Wire ends I really don’t much reason to keep HBO anymore. Showtime is awesome and it’s amazing how HBO sat back with Soprano’s and let Showtime overrun them. Showtime is a must have for quality TV.

    Brotherhood is the most underrated show on TV.

  • Big D D says:

    I would have never subscribed to Showtime, if it wasn’t for EliteXC.

  • Sergio says:

    “I would have never subscribed to Showtime, if it wasn’t for EliteXC.”

    Same here.

    I don’t have the time to watch The L Word, The Tudors, Dexter, etc. despite all the raves even with my DVR. They’d just end up sitting in the hard drive taking up space.

  • Evan says:

    Junkie is reporting that EliteXC has inked a deal with CBS. wow!

  • Tanner says:

    Evan – some people are going to say Dana dropped the ball on this one and some are going to say who cares its just elitexc. No matter how you spin it EliteXC was the first MMA promotion to land a network TV deal, regardless if showtime owns CBS or the other way around. Its a huge step.

  • j says:

    It is too coincidental that the CBS deal is struck as Showtime announced a 11% increase in subscriptions?

    On a side note, I train an MMA gym and EliteXC just signed 4 of the best pro fighters in the gym. So they are acquiring new talent probably to enhance their line-up

  • Beau says:

    Weeds, Dexter, and Brotherhood all had their second seasons during the first quarter and Californication had its debut season. I watch the EliteXC events but I got showitme for those shows. Obviously its a combination of things but you can probably chalk up 1-2% of the increase to EliteXC and the rest to their great original programming.

  • Melissa says:

    I subscribed to Showtime because of EliteXC only. I do enjoy the other movies and shows, but if not for EliteXC I would not continue the subscription.

  • Jeremy says:

    I just want to add a little to what some others have said:

    Elite is not the reason for the increase. If every single person that watched the November Elite card had just added Showtime because of that, it would have resulted in about a 3% increase. That is if EVERYONE was a new subscriber.

    Dexter is the main reason for the increase. This is simply a fact.

    Season two of Dexter aired in the fourth quarter and became Showtime’s biggest hit. The increase coincides with the airing of said season.

    It did so well that it has now been edited and will air on CBS.

    Trust me, I actually cover television and film. The nov 18th episode was the most watched show in Showtime history.

    Dexter is now officially the biggest show that the channal has ever had.

    The Kimbo/Tank fight had about 4% of showtime subscribers watching.

  • Nate says:

    #22 jeremy, thanks for the insight, that is cool analysis.


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