"Black Mirror" (UK Original)
Origination has become of even greater strategic importance to Netflix as it builds its worldwide footprint and faces competition from the owners of the biggest content catalogs in the world (US studios) and deeply entrenched local players. New analysis from Omdia of PlumResearch data reveals the importance of originals in the United States and other key Netflix markets.
In the United States, 35.6% of total hours watched in the first three months of 2023 were Netflix Originals. The United States was the streamer’s biggest market, with a total of 14.8 billion hours streamed in the first quarter of 2023. Furthermore, originals accounted for the largest share of total hours watched in Poland – just under 40%. At the other end of the scale were Japan (20.6%) and South Korea (25.4%).
Although these percentages appear to be low, considering the massive investments Netflix has made in original content, Omdia estimates that last year the vast majority of Netflix Originals were produced in the United States: 403 titles out of a total 935 titles launched in 2022.
The analysis of viewing of local Netflix originals (i.e., originals produced in the country in question) offers a noticeably different perspective of the streamer's success with local production. For example, out of all original hours watched in South Korea, local titles accounted for nearly 68%. The United States also had a high percentage of 61.4%, and both countries were very far ahead of the next placed country, Japan. Viewing of German originals in Germany was just 2.7%.
"Given its increasing emphasis on originals and heavy investment, the share of viewing actually going to these titles seems surprisingly low. The reasons for this could include: the continuing strong performance of certain non-original content, especially theatrical movies but also some TV series that have been acquired by Netflix. The ‘Harry Potter’ movies and TV series like ‘Brooklyn Nine-Nine’ and ‘Rick and Morty’ feature among the top titles in other countries like Italy and Germany," said Tim Westcott, Senior Principal Analyst at Omdia.
"Another reason is the depth of catalog: Netflix has been originating since 2012, but still does not have the volume of The Walt Disney Company, Warner Bros. Discovery or Paramount," Westcott added.