Horror for Netflix as it misses subscriber targets


Netflix shares plunge in after-hours trade after forecast miss

One reason for the shortfall may have been a lack of content. Netflix released a thin slate of shows in the quarter, relative to its typical output.

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Netflix shares tumbled more than 14 percent after the streaming giant missed its second-quarter growth forecast by more than a million subscribers. Specifically, Netflix is anticipating a net add of 5 million new subscribers for the September quarter, a tad below some analyst projections that saw Netflix bringing 6 million new subscribers on board. Research from CBH Insights cited by CNBC suggests that Netflix subscribers watch an average of 10 hours per week, compared to just five hours on Amazon and Hulu, whereas the National Bureau of Labor Statistics says traditional TV viewers watch almost 20 hours per week. The company added 700,000 domestic subscribers during Q2, along with 4.5 million overseas, missing company and analyst estimates on both fronts.

Meanwhile, technology rivals such as Apple are upping their content efforts. In the second quarter of 2017, it earned 15 cents a share.

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It meant that Netflix, whose shares have more than doubled in value in the year to date amid a strong run for subscriber growth, was on course for the biggest drop in its market value in four years ahead of the stock exchange opening on Tuesday.

Analysts had expected 79 cents on revenue of $3.94 billion.

"I think Netflix is approaching a ceiling of subscriber growth, especially here in the U.S. They're going to have to do something bold and different". He cut his target price on Netflix from $425 to $375 as a result of his concerns.

"Our viewing is setting year-over-year records, the shows that we have coming", he said in a conference call on Monday. It posted US$3.91 billion, compared with an average estimate of US$3.94 billion. Revenue was up 6 percent to $3.9 billion.

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This was expected to be a "subdued" quarter, as I wrote on Friday.

Walt Disney is hoping to close on a deal to buy prized entertainment franchises from 21st Century Fox to feed into a video streaming service Disney will debut next year.

Netflix cited an array of competitors, starting with YouTube.

Netflix has been paying up big time for its content. Netflix said Monday that it expects content expenses to hit $8 billion this year. "Our strategy is to simply keep improving, as we've been doing every year in the past".

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