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Netflix on Track to Add 10M European Subs by 2018 as It Grows to 100M Worldwide

26 Oct, 2015 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Research firm IHS projections Netflix will add 10 million subs in Western Europe by 2018 — a growth tally rivaled by the United States. The sub growth underscores the Los Gatos, Calif.-based subscription streaming pioneer’s march toward 100 million subs globally in the next two years as it marks service in 200 countries.

The United Kingdom will be Netflix’s top European territory in 2018 with 7.1 subscribers, according to IHS. The region, which includes Ireland, launched in 2012 and currently lags behind Canada (bowed in 2010) as Netflix’s top international territory.

“International subscribers are key for Netflix,”Ted Hall, research director at IHS Technology, said in a statement.

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings told French newspaper Le Figaro the service has already added 2 million subs in France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Germany, Austria and Switzerland since bowing service in the countries in September 2014.

Paris-based investment bank Exane BNP Paribas, in a note, said Netflix continued to make strong inroads in France and is set to rival CanalPlus in subscribers in a third of the time. Consumer response in Germany has been more measured due to the market’s strong affinity toward packaged media (notably Blu-ray Disc) and rival SVOD services.

“Traction is probably not as good in Germany where competition is higher,” said Exane BNP Paribas.

Regardless, IHS says over-the-top video continues to proliferate globally — think HBO Now, Showtime, DisneyLife, Discovery DPlay, Sling TV, Charter Spectrum TV, Shout TV, etc., as media companies and pay-TV operators jump on the bandwagon.

Western Europe SVOD revenue is projected to grow 135% through 2019, topping $4 billion. At the same time, North American SVOD revenue is projected to grow 94%, topping $12 billion in revenue.

Sofia Chang, EVP of worldwide digital distribution and home entertainment at HBO, and Mary Daily, president of worldwide marketing for 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment, will join a panel discussion on SVOD at the IHS PEVE Entertainment Business Futures Conference in London from Oct. 28 to 29.

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