Netflix has an unsustainable business model in the meantime.

Becky Berkman

2019-05-02 13:30:00 Thu ET

Netflix has an unsustainable business model in the meantime. Netflix maintains a small premium membership fee of $9-$14 per month for its unique collection of TV shows, programs, and movies etc, whereas, HBO charges $15 per month. With its original video content, Netflix earns a mere net profit of 28 cents per subscriber (in comparison to $3.65 for HBO) due to high programming costs and low subscription prices. As Netflix expands into international video markets, these margins cannot be feasible in the long run.

Netflix relies on vertical integration to curate more original video content with lower programming costs. As the average Netflix subscriber streams video for about 2 hours per day, this integration empowers Netflix to charge higher premiums. Netflix can run ads on the broad network of almost 150 million subscribers worldwide (60 million U.S. subscribers) as of early-2019. Ad executive heads from YouTube and JPMC to external media agencies such as UM and MediaLink view running ads as an inevitable fresh fallback route for Netflix. With $15 billion annual costs and $10 billion debt mountains, Netflix needs to find feasible ways to monetize its user base. As NYU business valuation professor Aswath Damodaran suggests, Netflix now has an unsustainable business model.

 


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