Sign up and buckle up: consumers are embracing a new long-term trend that has become so powerful and pervasive that CNBC's Jim Cramer can't ignore it.
"The best secular trend out there right now? ... I think it's the rise of the subscription economy, the legion of companies that make their money by selling some kind of subscription service, often in industries where we never even realized subscriptions could make any sense," the "Mad Money" host said Friday.
After speaking with the founder, Chairman and CEO of Zuora, a newly public software company that sees itself as a "pure play" on the subscription economy, Cramer's perspective on the trend completely changed.
"There's no reason you should have to buy anything," Tien Tzuo, the Zuora chief, told Cramer in a Thursday interview. "We used to have Netflix, we used to have Spotify, but now, we're paying for exercise bikes as a subscription, we're paying for travel as a subscription, ... companies are [even] paying for things like tractor[s] as a subscription."
Tzuo, who wrote a book on the "subscription-based economy," suggested to Cramer that this model isn't going away.
"The point here is that, like it or not, the subscription economy is the future and the companies that understand that are making a fortune," Cramer reflected.