With Netflix driving change and innovation across the film and TV industries, Janey Hurran takes a look at its emerging competitors across the UK, Germany, Italy, Poland and the Netherlands, and how the market's evolution is changing competition law and contract negotiations.
Everyone is aware of the impact Netflix has had on the television and film industry, particularly in the last couple of years. With the release of their own original films such as ‘Roma’, which won three Oscars earlier this year, and their own successful original TV shows such as Stranger Things, Netflix is ascendant in both arms of the industry. Their recent original film Birdbox was viewed by around 45 million accounts in the first weekend, which would far surpass any box office equivalent, although Netflix has only recently started releasing figures and there is no way to verify them. Now boasting 137 million subscribers, 33% of US viewers have actually ‘cut the cord’ of their cable TV entirely, in favour of OTT platforms. No longer is Netflix simply a streaming service there to distribute third party content, but in 2018 alone they invested $12 billion into their own original content, which makes up 85% of the shows on their streaming service. These unprecedented levels of investment have made it difficult for traditional competitors to keep up with Netflix, however this could be about to change. With industry norms and long-established precedent being turned on its head, a few significant names in the industry are now emerging as potential competitors to give Netflix a run for their money. Here we look at the new UK and EU competitors and how these industry disruptions are affecting the industry legally.
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