Streaming giant Netflix’s Asia-Pacific business area has announced that revenue for the region touched $1.5 billion in 2019, which is triple of what it was two years ago.
“We’re getting much smarter about the Asia Pacific markets in both the content we offer, as well as the pricing and packaging and bundling and distribution and payment methods to our members, so I think we’re getting better (in the region) literally every quarter and every year,” said Netflix CFO Spencer Neumann in the earnings call earlier this week on 21 January 2020.
Netflix says said it is now positioning APAC as their next target growth market.
As of current fiscal, Asia-Pacific accounts for merely 7.3% of Netflix’s total revenue even as it overtook all other markets as the highest growth market. By the end of December 2019, it had more than an estimated 16 million paid subscribers in the region, up from 6.5 million in 2017, and 10.6 million in 2018.
Netflix recently bought rights to distribute 21 titles created by Studio Ghibli, a Japanese animation house, in around 190 countries, covering most parts of Asia as well. Ghibli, best known for its anime feature films, has in the past produced short films and TV commercials.
Netflix had also announced in November last year that CJ ENM, a South Korean entertainment and mass media company, and its subsidiary Studio Dragon would create an original Korean series for Netflix under a three-year partnership that starts this year.
“Our original local content in Japan and Korea, for example, has become much more sophisticated about what is super impactful in those countries,” said Ted Sarandos, Netflix’s Chief Content Officer.
In overall revenue terms, Netflix reported $5.5 billion in revenue, up 31% year over year, in the fourth quarter (CY) which ended on 31 December 2019, whereas full-year revenue came to over $20 billion.
Globally, Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) now plans to accelerate its spend even more on content in 2020 — close to $17.3 billion in cash on originals and licensed shows later this year. For a perspective, rivals Disney (NYSE:DIS) and AT&T (NYSE:T) plan to spend approximately $2.5 billion and $4 billion, respectively.
Netflix Inc., was founded by Reed Hastings and Marc Randolph in 1997 in California.