CNN+, which was CNN’s new streaming service that launched on March 29th, will shut down at the end of this month, according to Deadline. The outlet also reported that Warner Bros. Discovery, CNN’s new parent company, had plans for cutbacks while reports of low user numbers were coming in.
Chris Licht, the new chairman and CEO of CNN Worldwide, said that the network has decided to “focus our investment on CNN’s core news-gathering operations and in further building CNN Digital. This is not a decision about quality; we appreciate all of the work, ambition and creativity that went into building CNN+, an organization with terrific talent and compelling programming. But our customers and CNN will be best served with a simpler streaming choice,” per Deadline.
Licht also indicated that they wanted to make CNN’s news offerings a part of a broader streaming strategy along with sports, entertainment and non-fiction programming, according to Deadline. He also noted that all CNN+ employees would be paid and receive benefits for the next 90 days, and held the possibility that they would get work elsewhere in the company, which was first reported by CNN.
Licht sent a memo to CNN+ employees announcing the end of the streaming service.
CNN President Chris Licht has sent a memo announcing the end of CNN+ pic.twitter.com/xlfRDoJSMl
— Michael M. Grynbaum (@grynbaum) April 21, 2022
The network was expected to feature shows from popular media personalities including Chris Wallace and Kasie Hunt. Deadline reports that there is speculation that Wallace’s show will continue in some form while Hunt had been appearing on CNN’s regular programming since she was hired last year.
Hunt tweeted her support for the members of her team who were laid off in response to CNN+’s shutdown.
The journalists I have been privileged to work with on CNN Plus are world class
I am so incredibly proud to be able to call them colleagues
If your organization would like a chance to benefit from their talents, my DMs are open
This is *my* job for the foreseeable future
— Kasie Hunt (@kasie) April 21, 2022