Following Tuesday’s revelation about Spain the company continues to plot its rapid streaming-only global deployment and aims to be operational in select Asian territories by the end of next year, people with knowledge of the situation have told Screen.
The California-based rental service, with a market cap of $12.6bn and close to 28m North American subscribers, is eyeing a roll-out in Asian markets with robust broadband infrastructure such as Japan and South Korea.
The development follows a report on Screendaily in which Pedro Perez, president of the Spanish producers association FAPAE, confirmed Netflix had approached members ahead of a planned 2012 launch in the piracy-stricken European territory.
In earlier unconfirmed reports, the company is believed to have struck a deal with Lionsgate UK and potentially others, signalling a content grab ahead of a first quarter 2012 launch in that market.
In-country sources told Screen that Netflix executives had visited London and Spain over the past month to meet with networks, studios and independent distributors.
European expansion would appear to fire a broadside at Amazon-owned LoveFilm, which currently operates in the UK, Germany, Denmark, Sweden and Norway and has around 1.7m subscribers.
It is understood price points are under discussion between Netflix and potential content providers and could be on a par with the US and Canada. The company currently charges US customers $7.99 a month for unlimited instant viewing.
In a recent earnings call Netflix CEO Reed Hastings said the company would launch in an unnamed market in early 2012 after entering Latin America in the fourth quarter 2011.
When questioned about international deployment a Netflix spokesperson said: “Netflix has not announced any plans for international expansion other than Latin America later this year. Anything else is speculation and we’re not commenting.”