MoviePass Inc.’s parent Helios & Matheson Analytics Inc. HMNY, -10.00% is set to close its business permanently on Saturday and is considering a sale of its assets, including its Moviefone and MoviePass Films business. Attempts to revive the embattled subscription-movie service have apparently failed, with the company on July 4 announcing that its service would be temporarily interrupted in order to work on an “improved version” of its mobile app Inc. The decision was a bad omen as it came during the busiest time for the movie business. In March, Helios & Matheson raised some $6 million in financing to support MoviePass, including its technology. The once-highflying company had lost nearly all of its value over the past year. Shares of HMNY, a reference to the company’s trading symbol, are down 89% so far in the 2019, according to FactSet data. By comparison, the S&P 500 index SPX, -0.07% is up nearly 20% so far this year and the Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, +0.14% is up 16.7% over the same period. HMNY acquired MoviePass in 2017, a service with just 20,000 subscribers at the time. The operator cut MoviePass’s monthly fee to $9.95 from up to $50 a month, and its subscriber base ballooned, crossing the 3-million mark in June of 2018, MarketWatch reported last year. However, the burden of delivering cheap movies proved challenging for the company.
Helios & Matheson Analytics Inc., the corporate parent of MoviePass, announced Friday afternoon that it would shutter the service as of Saturday. The company’s board is reviewing options, including selling the entire business or just MoviePass.