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Netflix beats expectations on profit and subscribers

Netflix topped expectations Thursday as it reported 9.3 million new subscribers and profits of $2.3 billion in the first three months of the year.

Netflix loses subscribers in two consecutive quarters
Netflix - © AFP/File Chris DELMAS
Netflix - © AFP/File Chris DELMAS
Glenn CHAPMAN

Netflix topped expectations Thursday as it reported 9.3 million new subscribers and profits of $2.3 billion in the first three months of the year.

Silicon Valley-based Netflix had bet heavily on its content lineup to win fans, with subscribers now totaling 269.6 million.

“With more than two people per household on average, we have an audience of over half a billion people,” Netflix said in a letter to investors.

“No entertainment company has ever programmed at this scale and with this ambition before.”

Netflix shares slipped more than 3 percent to $589.64 in after-market trades, apparently due to the company saying sales in the current quarter might be less than market expectations.

Netflix took in $1 billion more in profit in the quarter than it did in the same period a year earlier, according to earnings figures.

Reported revenue in the recently-ended quarter was $9.4 billion compared with $8.2 billion in the same period last year.

Netflix shares have climbed since the start of this year as subscriber numbers have grown amid a crackdown on password sharing.

In a separate bid for revenue, Netflix launched an ad-subsidized offering around the same time as the crackdown on sharing passwords outside of homes.

Netflix unveiled a sprawling TV and film lineup early this year as it bet that must-see content would keep viewers paying for the streaming service.

In March, Netflix released keenly-anticipated “3 Body Problem.”

The series was adapted from a best-selling Chinese trilogy of novels which takes place in an alternate version of modern reality where humanity has made contact with an alien civilization.

Other shows due later this year include the eagerly awaited second season of “Squid Game” — the dystopian Korean horror tale about a fictional, deadly game show which remains by far the most-watched Netflix TV series ever.

It will follow returning hero Gi-hun as he abandons his plans to go to the United States and “starts a chase with a motive.” 

Also among a notably international lineup were a Spanish-language, Colombian-made TV series based on Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s beloved novel “One Hundred Years of Solitude,” and a six-part drama about the life of Brazilian racing great Ayrton Senna.

Britain’s Prince Harry and his actress wife Meghan Markle are working on two nonfiction series with Netflix — a lifestyle program and a show on professional polo, their production company announced earlier this month.

The couple, who split with the British monarchy in 2020 and now reside in California, signed a deal with the streaming giant that same year for multiple projects.

On the movie side, Eddie Murphy returns this summer in a new “Beverly Hills Cop” sequel.

AFP
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