Six months after its launch in April, Quibi has announced its shutdown due to the ongoing challenges presented by COVID-19 as well as their inability to draw in viewers, according to Variety. The company is led by founder Jeffrey Katzenberg (Shrek, Spirit) and CEO Meg Whitman, who confirmed their intentions to “wind down its business operations and initiate a process to sell its assets,” via Variety.
Alongside Quibi’s slow start, only collecting 1.4 million downloads in its first two months while Disney+ collected about 41 million downloads in the same time span, as well as the pandemic’s affects on the streamer according to Katzenberg, Quibi’s shutdown can also be blamed on its inability to find a buyer, according to Variety. Despite having launched at the forefront of the pandemic, in its official announcement reported on Variety, the company referred to the challenges that resulted from the pandemic, “the changed industry landscape and ongoing challenges, it was clear that the business would not be able to continue operating for the long-term on a standalone basis.” Meanwhile in a prepared statement, Katzenberg reiterated that “Quibi was founded to create the next generation of storytelling…The world has changed dramatically since Quibi launched and our standalone business model is no longer viable.” Similarly, Whitman reported in a statement that “While we have enough capital to continue operating for a significant period of time, we made the difficult decision to wind down the business, return cash to our shareholders, and say goodbye to our talented colleagues with grace.” Both statements were reported in Variety.
Having launched in early 2020, the streaming services costed $4.99 per month with ads and $7.99 per month without ads. Quibi subscribers will receive notifications about how much longer they will have access to Quibi’s services.