A little over a year ago, Netflix borrowed a ton of money in order to really kick up its original programming lineup a notch or five. As it turns out, in 2016 Netflix will show no signs of slowing down. In fact, the subscription streaming service announced at the TCA winter press tour that the company is going to be spending an incredible amount of money to continue to produce new originals for fans. The insane amount the global company plans to spend? 6 billion. Yes, billion with a “b.” Here’s what Ted Sarandos had to say at the event:
We’re going to spend in 2016 about $5 billion dollars on content on a P&L basis, which means about $6 billion in cash.
Last year, Netflix borrowed about a billion in order to spend money on producing new content. In the months following, we got new seasons of already-popular shows like Orange is the New Black and House of Cards, but also a whole slate of other originals, including Netflix’s Marvel programs, Grace & Frankie, Narcos and many, many more. The decision to borrow money also led Netflix to increase prices in the United States and elsewhere, and those who work for the company have said the price increases will continue over time.
While we thought a billion was a lot, six billion is an even higher number. According to EW, the six billion in funding will lead the subscription streaming service to create over 600 hours of original programming this year. That number also includes acquisitions from other networks, companies and channels, which includes shows like Between in the US, which was acquired from Canada and was not available for binge-watching when it premiered.
Netflix hasn’t shied away from taking chances. Earlier this year, we learned Netflix would be spending $150 million to produce six seasons of a new series about Queen Elizabeth called The Crown. With 10 episodes per season, The Crown will average a $2.5 million cost per episode, although that’s less than a show like Game of Thrones costs. So, if you are wondering where some of that six billion will be going, wonder no longer.
On the press tour, Ted Sarandos also called Netflix a global network that is capable of producing programming that can then be consumed by audiences around the world. The company has had great success with a diverse range of shows and that seems as if it will be a trend that continues through 2016. Only time will tell if the money the company is spending will adversely affect the average consumers’ wallet; currently 70 million individuals subscribe to the streaming service and if more continue to add on, the increase in monthly price may not be as adverse as expected. Still, I’m guessing we’ll be paying more for Netflix moving forward than we’ve paid in the past, and not just because of the recent price increase. We’ll keep you posted.
In the meantime, here's what releases Netflix has coming up.