NBC Universal CEO Jeff Shell says Peacock has hit 18 million subscribers.
“That’s real subscribers, paying us real American dollars,” he told the Ubs Tmt Conference during a session that was webcast on Monday. A bullish Shell also pointed to Netflix and other rival streaming platforms getting into the advertising business as validation that NBCU placed a winning bet on an ad-supported streaming model.
“We were late coming into streaming, but we clearly chose the right business model,” he told investors. Asked about the path to profitability for Peacock, Shell said the strategy is the streaming platform helps offset accelerating declines in linear TV revenues, due to cord-cutting and a worsening advertising market.
“We believe in the premium video ad-supported, dual revenue stream — essential broadcast and cable on streaming — driven by key programming,” Shell said of NBCU’s business strategy for its flagship.