Discovery said Food Network Kitchen launched with ‘zero’ consumer issues

Food Network Kitchen
Food Network Kitchen was launched in partnership with Amazon. (Discovery Inc.)

Discovery Inc.’s recently launched streaming service Food Network Kitchen got off to a smooth start according to Peter Faricy, CEO of global direct-to-consumer at the company.

Faricy, speaking today at the Wells Fargo TMT Conference, said Food Network Kitchen got off the ground with zero front-facing customer issues. That’s notable considering the technical troubles Disney+ faced on its first day, though it’s very likely that Food Network Kitchen did not experience the same levels of consumer interest.

Food Network Kitchen, which launched in October, charges $6.99/month or $59.99/year for access to live cooking classes, more than 800 on-demand cooking classes, 3,000 instructional videos along with a library of Food Network series and recipes. The service works on mobile devices, along with Amazon Alexa and Echo Show, Fire Tablets, Fire TV streaming media devices and Fire TV Edition smart TVs. The service has partners with Amazon Alexa to offer hands-free voice controls.

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The service will also include some e-commerce features. At launch, customers will be able to order ingredients through the Food Network Kitchen app using Amazon Fresh in select cities. In 2020, the service will let consumers directly purchase the equipment being used by the Food Network Kitchen chefs.

Next year, the service will also offer “Kitchen-on-Call,” a feature offering 24/7 access to live cooking advice and support.

Faricy declined to dig further into the early engagement numbers for Food Network Kitchen, but he said Discovery is targeting next year for an investor day to provide an update on the service and the company’s other plans for direct-to-consumer products

He said the investment in 2020 will shift away from direct-to-consumer infrastructure and more toward launching new services. Those will include Discovery’s efforts with the BBC along with Chip and Joanna Gaines’ Magnolia brand.

Faricy said that the Magnolia streaming service will have a subscription layer that includes original content and a commerce feature that will be available to the public.

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