IHS Markit noted Netflix’s subs base grew 30% between 2014 and 2015, and forecasted it to grow 21% this year, as the SVOD service reaches a “territorial expansion” peak.
International subs will grow 38% this year, the research claimed, with more than 2.8 million of these coming from the 130 new territories Netflix expanded into in January when it went virtually global (notably excluding China).
“At the moment, Netflix has 79.9 million total paying subscribers,” said Irina Kornilova, senior analyst at IHS Technology. “By 2018, international subscribers will over-take the number of subscribers in the US for the first time, and by 2020, Netflix will have 75 million international subscribers.”
Netflix will break the 100 million subs mark by 2018, IHS expects.
The research house also claimed Netflix’s revenues would reach US$13 billion by 2020, with 53% coming from international markets. Domestic revenue will hit US$6.2 billion, with international taking around US$7 billion.
Unsurprisingly, western Europe will be among the leading regions outside the US for Netflix by the end of this year, with more than six million subscribers in the UK. There will also be a combined 5.4 million subs from the Netherlands and the Nordics.
Germany will reach 2.2 million paying subs by the end of 2020 despite strong competition from Amazon Prime Video, IHS predicted.
Markets such as Poland and Turkey, which are expected to be soon ‘localised’ by Netflix, will drive further uptake in their surrounding regions, but the effect will not happen immediately, said IHS.
“With the worldwide launch, Netflix has launched a platform upon which it can build and differentiate the service to fit specifics of every region in the future,” Kornilova said.
“Netflix is starting this localisation process in Poland and Turkey this year. Subscribers in these countries can expect an addition of local languages to the user interface, subtitles and dubbing of content. This will help drive new subscriber numbers dramatically.”
Localisation will continue through to 2018, with these new territories forecasted to grow paying membership 133% in 2017 and 62% the following year.
Subscribers from countries Netflix debuted in this year will reach 19 million by 2020, IHS predicted.