We Are Way Behind YouTube and Hotstar: Netflix CEO Reed Hastings

In an earnings call on Monday, CEO Reed Hastings said that the company is pleased with its progress in India but admitted it has a a lot of work ahead. Netflix saw its shares drop by almost 15 per cent in the US market when it reported a “strong but not stellar” second quarter. The digital giant fell short of a million subscribers than predicted.

This comes on the heels of the highly successful launch of Netflix’s first Indian original series Sacred Games, starring Saif Ali Khan and Nawazuddin Siddiqui. In May, the platform released the anthology feature Lust Stories with segments directed by Zoya Akhtar, Dibakar Banerjee, Karan Johar and Anurag Kashyap.

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings.

"Netflix is having great success getting established, getting a reputation going. And with this triplet of Lust Stories, Sacred Games and Ghoul, we’re really getting some nice momentum in our India growth." - Reed Hastings, CEO, Netflix

“We're really pleased with the progress and tracking we're making since we launched 2.5 years ago, and we just have a lot of work and a lot of opportunity ahead,” Hastings added. He went on to talk about the company’s competition in India in terms of other streaming platforms and traditional TV.

"We’re way behind YouTube, Hotstar. Those are really the leaders on the Internet, and there’s so much TV viewing that linear TV that could be Internet viewing." - Reed Hastings

Sacred Games starring Saif Ali Khan and Nawazuddin Siddiqui

When asked about pricing, Cheif Product Officer Greg Peters had this to say, “We got a lot of room to grow in a reasonably affluent part of the society in India and other markets around the world... But having said that, we're constantly testing our pricing models, what pricing strategies best.”

“And I do think that the price point is mostly relevant to the value proposition, our Indian consumers finding a lot to watch on Netflix, having a great time doing it. And if they are, that price point becomes more of a value proposition than a premium proposition.” Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos added.

"We’re still... a niche product. We’ve got a long way to go to expand languages and many other aspects to be able to cover -- be a broad Indian product." - Reed Hastings

Poster for the Netflix series Ghoul starring Radhika Apte

Netflix’s next big Indian release is the Radhika Apte-starring horror series Ghoul, which comes out on 24 August.

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