CNN+ set to shut down after just a month

CNN’s parent company is pulling the plug on its much-hyped CNN+ streaming service on April 30, just a month after it launched, the network confirmed Thursday.

What You Need To Know

  • CNN’s parent company is pulling the plug on its CNN+ streaming service on April 30, just a month after it launched, the network said Thursday
  • The network has seen a change in management since the service went live March 29
  • The lineup of hosts on CNN+ includes former Fox News anchor Chris Wallace, former NPR co-host Audie Cornish and food writer Alison Roman

The news was first reported by Axios.

The network has seen a change in management since the service went live March 29. CNN’s former parent company, WarnerMedia, merged earlier this month with Discovery to form Warner Bros. Discovery, and its CEO, David Zaslav, has said he wants to house all of the company’s brands on a single streaming platform. Some CNN+ programming may appear on that service, possibly HBO Max.

“This decision is in line with Warner Brothers Discovery’s broader direct-to-consumer strategy,” CNN’s incoming president, Chris Licht, said in a statement Thursday. “In a complex streaming market, consumers want simplicity and an all-in service, which provides a better experience and more value than stand-alone offerings.”

Hundreds of CNN+ employees were notified of the stunning move in a meeting Thursday afternoon, the network said. Andrew Morse, the executive vice president overseeing the service, will leave the company after a transition period. 

In announcing plans to launch the streaming service last year, then-CNN President Jeff Zucker touted it as a “product that grows the reach and scope of the CNN brand in a way that no one else is doing. Nothing like this exists.” CNN reportedly planned to spend $1 billion on the platform over four years. 

The lineup of hosts includes many existing CNN personalities such as Anderson Cooper, Wolf Blitzer and Jake Tapper, but also new faces such as former Fox News anchor Chris Wallace, former NPR co-host Audie Cornish and food writer Alison Roman. 

Axios reported earlier this week that CNN+ has 150,000 subscribers. The service was charging customers $5.99 a month.