Vimeo is apparently getting ready to compete against Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu with the launch of its own subscription streaming service. As The Hollywood Reporter points out, interim CEO Joey Levin recently discussed the plans in a letter to Vimeo’s shareholders. "Vimeo has the once-in-a-generation opportunity to, following in Netflix's footsteps, deliver compelling subscription viewing experiences for consumers in the market for pay TV," he wrote.
Following in Netflix’s footsteps, kind of
Levin claims that Vimeo can run this unnamed service at a “fraction of the cost” of its competitors, because it won’t need to pay “billions” for programming, and won’t need to start from scratch. The letter doesn’t give any details about how much the service will cost, or what it will include.
Vimeo’s decision to offer viewers a subscription plan isn’t unexpected. The platform already offers an On Demand service where users can rent or buy movies, so a subscription-based offering seems like the logical next step. Users can also already subscribe directly to specific Vimeo creators and purchase videos from them.
Vimeo seems to want to attract an audience interested in videos that lean underground, or have a cult following. “Unlike other video platforms which focus on building celebrities and influencers, Vimeo is home to the world’s best behind the camera talent – emerging filmmakers, editors and directors,” Levin wrote. In the letter, Levin namechecks High Maintenance, Vimeo’s success story baby that was eventually picked up by HBO. He also mentions that several Vimeo shorts have been nominated for Oscars.