Netflix growth improves as streaming war looms

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For the first time, Netflix acknowledges that Disney is a great competitor, after glib comments when asked about Netflix's competitions before.

Netflix exclusive Stranger Things enjoyed mega-success, with a huge 64 million member households streaming the new third season in its first four weeks. The streaming video giant said it doesn't expect its subscriber growth to jump for the full year from the 2018 total because of rising competition. Revenue was $5.24 billion, slightly below the $5.25 billion expected.

Netflix reported a net income of $665 million in the recently ended quarter, jumping up from $403 million in the same period previous year and topping most analyst forecasts.

Moving forward Netflix reported it will continue to invest heavily in original films, both to moderate the pullback of second-run content from some studios and because its data shows that original content is driving user engagement.

In its shareholder letter, Netflix outlined some of its strategies, including a stronger focus on original content. Not just its competition, but the competition of all streaming services. For example, we wrote recently about Netflixs lowering its prices for a mobile-only version in India and Netflix giving free access to the pilot episode of Bard of Blood.

Shares of Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) were set for a breakout day Thursday after the company late Wednesday released earnings for the third quarter. Netflix said that its testing in India has proven to be more successful than originally anticipated, paving the way for more content that appeals to Indian viewers.

Netflix is not concerned about the arrival of Disney+ and HBO Max.

On the other hand, the shareholder letter from Netflix sends a more blunt message regarding its competitors.

The point being that as Hulu does't operate in Canada, and in spite of its 30 million US subscribers, it is not necessarily a Netflix competitor. "There may be some modest headwind to our near-term growth, and we have tried to factor that into our guidance", admitted Netflix, while setting out its stall in defence.

Disney+ is launching next month, and the letter adds that while this has "some great titles (especially catalog titles), none have the variety, diversity and quality of new original programming that we are producing around the world". At the end of the day yesterday, Netflix stock was valued at $286.28 per share.



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