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Barely two weeks ago, a report from consultancy firm Ovum suggested that Netflix’s spend on programming was out of control and “not sustainable”. Ovum’s highly critical analysis of Netflix’s business model said: “Netflix’s current business model burns massive and increasing amounts of cash, which we think is not sustainable.”
Netflix has now countered the report by announcing that it had 30 original scripted drama series in development, and that next year it would double its output to increase its inventory to some 1,000 hours.
Netflix Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos told a New York analyst conference (for bankers UBS) that its output would in 2017 embrace unscripted (reality) TV. “Unscripted television is a very interesting business,” Sarandos said, and that the OTT player is focusing on shows that are “more likely to travel internationally.” He said that some shows, for example, Ultimate Beastmaster will have additional participants and commentators from a half-dozen different countries, including the USA, Brazil, South Korea, Mexico, Germany and Japan. “When Beastmaster hits in Korea, they’ll never have seen anything like it,” he told delegates.
Sarandos dismissed rumours that Disney might be interested in buying Netflix, telling the conference that such a move made it difficult to stay as disciplined as it had been.