Netflix’s growth surges with ‘Tiger King’ and ‘Ozark,’ the most popular shows of early 2020.
The streaming platform announced the company had 182.9 million paid subscribers around the world at the end of the first quarter of 2020. Netflix previously estimated only adding 7.0 million subscribers in the quarter, but it was before COVID-19 forced millions of people to stay at home. Following the immense growth in the first three months of 2020, the platform expects slower growth after the lockdown is lifted throughout the rest of the year.
“[O]ur membership growth has temporarily accelerated due to home confinement,” Netflix said in its letter to shareholders. The company also announced the shutdown of Hollywood productions, has improved their “free cash flow” but, some productions will be delayed by approximately three months.
Netflix also said, “sharply stronger U.S. dollar” depressed international revenue. The company said customer-support operations had problems before the company hired 2,000 new work-from-home support representatives.
While financial analysts predicted Netflix to surge in growth during the pandemic, no one expected 16 million subscribers. Netflix made $5.77 billion in the first quarter and a net income of $709 million. Netflix projects 7.5 million additions. “Hopefully, progress against the virus will allow governments to lift the home confinement soon,” it said in the shareholder letter. “As that happens, we expect viewing and growth to decline.”
Netflix revealed its most popular productions, which was “Tiger King”. Nielsen estimated 34 million people watched the show in the first ten days, beating “Stranger Things” season 2. However, Netflix reveals 64 million people watched the “Tiger King”, beating earlier predictions. “Spenser Confidential” had 85 million viewers, and the dating show “Love is Blind” had 30 million.
Here’s a breakdown of Netflix reported ratings:
- Tiger King – 64 million
- Spenser Confidential – 85 million
- Love is Blind – 30 million.
- La Casa de Papel (“Money Heist”) – 65 million
- Ozark – 29 million
Netflix is preparing for more competition. WarnerMedia plans to launch HBO Max on May 27, NBCUniversal is starting Peacock on July 15, Disney Plus signed up 50 million paid subscribers, and Quibi was recently released.
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