Last night, Netflix announced that it will launch its streaming service in the Netherlands. According to the Hollywood Reporter, CEO Reed Hastings and his team previously hinted that Netflix would add one foreign country this year. Exact launch timing details have not yet been released.
“Upon launch, broadband Internet users in the Netherlands can subscribe to Netflix and instantly watch Hollywood, local and global TV series and films, including critically-acclaimed Netflix Original Series such as House of Cards and Arrested Development whenever and wherever they like on tablets, phones, TVs, game consoles and computers,” said the company.
The six-year-old online streaming giant has over 36 million members in forty countries, making the Netherlands the 41st.
The Hollywood Reporter further explains the reasoning behind Netflix’s choice of the Netherlands. The small country, with a population just over sixteen million, is a prime growth territory for VOD.
Figures from the Film Research Foundation illustrate the annual revenue from VOD in the Netherlands topped 96 million last year. Additionally, the number of people in the country watching films via VOD has doubled within the last three years.
“VOD currently makes up a quarter of total home entertainment revenue in the Netherlands, a proportion that is certain to grow as DVD sales continue to slump in the territory,” explains the Hollywood Reporter. “VOD growth, however, is also slowing, from 62 percent up in 2011 to 41 percent growth last year, something that analysts have suggested could be linked to illegal online screening.”
Competitors of Netflix include the video-on-demand services of UPC, part of Liberty Global Inc., Ziggo NV, HBO and Film1. Due to many Dutch natives speaking English as a second language, Netflix avoids some translation fees.