Walmart strikes exclusive streaming deal to give Paramount+ to Walmart+ subscribers

In this photo illustration, a woman’s silhouette holds a smartphone with the Walmart logo displayed on the screen and in the background.

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Walmart has reached a deal with Paramount Global to offer its streaming service as a perk of the retailer’s Walmart+ subscription service, according to a person familiar with the matter.

The retailer launched Walmart+ nearly two years ago to drive sales and deeper customer engagement. The membership program is the company’s answer to Amazon Prime and includes perks like free grocery delivery and gas discounts.

Since launching the service, the retail giant has declined to share the subscriber total and specifics about how the service is doing. Its membership count appears to have plateaued, according to estimates by market research firm Consumer Intelligence Research Partners. Walmart+ has 11 million customers as of July — the same as in the April, according to its estimates.

Paramount+ is one of the many services that compete for eyeballs in the streaming world. It includes movies and shows such as “Star Trek,” “The Godfather” and “SpongeBob Squarepants.” Paramount Global announced earlier this month Paramount+ has 43.3 million global subscribers. The company aims to reach 100 million subscribers by 2024.

The deal with Walmart will give Paramount+ a new distribution channel to add subscribers and will also give the company a branding boost. Paramount+ is the only streaming service that has struck a deal with Walmart and wanted to launch exclusively to get full marketing attention, according to a person familiar with the deal who was not authorized to speak publicly about it.

Walmart+ subscribers will get access to Paramount+’s “essential” tier, which typically costs $4.99 per month and includes commercials. Paramount also sells a premium product without ads for $9.99 per month.

Walmart declined to comment. Paramount did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The Wall Street Journal first reported the news of the deal.

Walmart will report its second-quarter earnings on Tuesday.

(With inputs from CNBC)