Ever since Netflix got into the original-content biz back in 2013 with House of Cards, the company has been spending billions every year. That year, it spent $2.4 billion, and the dollar amount has gone up steadily ever since—even when it briefly took a hit and lost some subscribers back in 2019 because of a price hike.
The projections performed by the folks at Bankr, based on Netflix’s investor briefings and historical data, shows that the spending won’t slow down this year. As subscriber numbers hit a new worldwide high—195.1 million households—Bankr believes Netflix spending will hit $19.03 billion US. You can see the projection table in full here.
The continual push for original content is nothing new for Netflix, but it may have more importance now than ever. The audience growth during the pandemic is probably extreme. Also, other streaming services with their own exclusive content libraries are becoming the new norm. Disney+, HBO Max, and Peacock all have shows or movies that used to be licensed to Netflix (including Marvel movies, Friends, and The Office, respectively)—and that programming is making a killing for the new services. Not that Netflix is suffering much, though, with originals such as The Queen’s Gambit and Bridgerton setting viewing records (according to Netflix).
The streaming company is also planning to go big with originals for the growing market in Asia. Having that global audience—something services such as Disney+ and Apple TV+ don’t have, at least not yet—makes a difference.
But it also may have to stop production on many shows, as COVID-19 isn’t coming to an end anytime soon. So maybe Netflix spending will be reduced in the long run, but the need for the content is only going to grow.