Netflix continues to lead the field in international content creation – The Streamable

With domestic subscriber growth all but over for most premium subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) streaming services, many companies have begun to focus outside US borders in hopes of tapping into customer bases that have not yet reached their saturation point. Not only are streamers launching in countries and territories around the world, but they are also investing in international content to flesh out their offerings in these new and expanding markets.

As it has done in nearly every non-advertising innovation since the advent of streaming, Netflix has been ahead of the curve in international content for some time and continues to be so. As Erik Gruenwedel of Media Play News reportsa recent study by research firm Ampere Analysis reveals that in the second quarter of 2022, the streaming giant ordered series and films in 28 international markets to bring its total to 44 since 2020.

Despite halting development in much of Europe the week after the end of the second quarter, Warner Bros. Discovery ordered projects in 27 markets during the quarter, while Disney ordered 23 and Prime Video ordered 21.

According to Ampere, Netflix ordered 97 international titles in the second quarter, compared to just 63 in the United States. The gap – 34 – was the widest since 2019 other than Q4 2021 – which was one title higher at 35. Netflix’s international production has topped its domestic content slate every quarter since Q4 2020 , although the disparity is only one project in the first quarter of 2021.

“It’s against the backdrop of intense competition at home that Netflix’s refocus on international originals makes the most sense,” Ampere analyst Fred Black said, according to Media Play News. Gruenwedel notes that Black’s report indicates that since the first quarter of 2020, Netflix has ordered 664 domestic titles, 50% more than Discovery+ and HBO Max combined, twice as many as non-sports streamers from Disney Hulu and Disney+, and three times more than Prime Video.

While these numbers represent a substantial difference between Netflix and its competitors, the totals are even more striking when watching overseas.

“Netflix ordered more non-US Originals during the period than its major rivals combined,” Black said. “Opening up new markets for Originals and doubling down on content from its biggest hit will be key to bringing Netflix back to subscriber growth.”

The world’s largest streamer – assuming you don’t include all of Disney’s duplicate customers – has totaled 814 foreign movies and series since 2020, three times more than Disney’s international offerings, 2.4 times Warner’s Bros. Discovery now combined, and 2.3 times more than Amazon.

The move to international markets makes perfect sense given the maturity of domestic streaming. With Netflix’s inherent lead, it’s looking to reach as many overseas homes as possible before other countries reach the same saturation point that the US and Canada already have.

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Jenny T. Curlee