Pluto TV, the free ad-supported streaming service owned by ViacomCBS, is on track to surpass $1 billion in U.S. advertising revenue by 2022, according to eMarketer.
The research company estimates Pluto TV will total up $786.7 million in net U.S. ad revenues this year, up 77.7% year over year, before reaching $1.14 billion in 2022.
“The growth of Pluto TV’s ad business is reflective of how advertisers are funneling more money toward streaming video,” wrote eMarketer’s Ross Benes, who cited Advertiser Perceptions research that suggests 42% of U.S. agency and marketing professionals plan to increase ad spending within streaming services over the next 12 months.
If the projection comes to pass, it will make good on comments Viacom made about revenue opportunities shortly after buying Pluto TV for $340 million in 2019.
“Pluto TV audience is young, gender-balanced and hard to reach – in fact, 50% of Pluto TV viewers are between the ages of 18 and 34. Importantly, Pluto TV – with its nascent ad sales force – currently sells less than 50% of this inventory, so there’s plenty of upside here,” said ViacomCBS CEO Bob Bakish during the earnings call in February 2019.
During its most recent earnings call, ViacomCBS said Pluto TV grew its global monthly active users (MAUs) to 43 million, up 80% year over year. That includes 12.9 million international MAUs in markets including Spain and Brazil. Pluto TV’s domestic MAUs increased to 30.1 million, up 34% year over year, and the company said it more than doubled its advertising revenue in the quarter.
With the increase in users and ad dollars, Pluto TV also saw growth in total viewing minutes and average monthly watch time per user, including across connected TVs and mobile devices.