That’s a quote from the recent report Netflix sent to shareholders. And it must be said – the observation is spot on.
Starting from 2013 when Netflix decided to invest in its own productions with ‘House of Cards’ to their enormous current library with series such as ‘The Crown’ and films including ‘The Trial of the Chicago 7’. The range of choice and content available to their subscribers is outstanding. I wonder how long it would take each week to catch up with all their new releases? It may be a challenge that even I will have to skip!
Anyhow, the aforementioned jamboree of productions has had a very positive impact on their financial performance. New subscribers topped eight million in Q4 2020 bringing total subscriber number to over 200 million. Netflix forecasts an additional six million subscribers in Q1 2021, revenues of $7.13 billion and net income of $1.36 bn, double that of the same period last year. To get to this market share they have burnt through cash, investing in new content, and their borrowings hit $16 bn at one point. However, Netflix has now announced that it no longer requires external financing to fund day-to-day operations, saying it now has enough money to both repay its loans and to continue with spend on content.
And just to help this along, it has announced hikes in subscription rates from next month. The standard monthly subscription will go up to £9.99, with the premium subscription rising to £13.99. The premium subscription works out more per annum than the BBC licence fee. But for the content available most subscribers seem happy.
It’s interesting to note that in an article published by Forbes in April 2019, it suggested that Netflix had hit the buffers and its stock was over-valued.
Two years is a long time in this Covid 19-era world. Today, the former DVD mail out service set up in 1997 is one of the world’s largest internet companies with a market value of $250 bn.
So, for us consumers let’s put our feet up and press the play button. My fingers are hovering on the hit French TV series ‘Call My Agent!’ and I really must watch ‘Mank’ – surely an Oscar contender? And these are only a couple on my wish list – I better go and find my remote control.