Netflix keeps racking up accolades — and subscribers around the world — which helped carry the streaming giant to a glowing second quarter, and sent its stock up 8 percent in after-hours trading.
For the three months ending June 30, Netflix reported revenue of $2.79 billion and earnings of 15 cents a share. That easily beat the $2.11 billion in revenue and earnings of 9 cents a share the company pulled in during the same time last year. Analysts had estimated revenue of $2.76 billion and earnings of 16 cents a share, on average.
More importantly, Netflix added 5.2 million net subscribers globally, which brought the service up to 104 million in total. Netflix had projected it would add 3.2 million worldwide. International markets drove that number, as more than 4 million of those new “Stranger Things” fans came from outside the United States. The company said its programming helped it beat subscriber expectations in a statement accompanying the earnings release.
“In Q2, we underestimated the popularity of our strong slate of content which led to higher-than-expected acquisition across all major territories,” the company said.
Netflix’s stock is up 31 percent year-to-date and shares climbed steadily last week, when the streaming service was a big winner in Hollywood as well as on Wall Street. The company hauled in 91 nominations, second-most among all outlets and a significant jump from the 54 noms they received last year. “Stranger Things” tied for second among all shows with 18 nominations, wile “The Crown” was nominated for 13 awards.
The company, which plans to spend $6 billion on content this year, leverages its collection of movies, original series and stand-up specials from the likes of Jerry Seinfeld and Dave Chappelle to drive incremental subscribers, hoping to draw them with an ever-expanding suite of A-list programming. However, its free spending has its limits — Netflix recently cancelled prestige series “Sense8” and “The Get Down,” with Sarandos telling Seinfeld at a Los Angeles conference that the service “couldn’t support those economics.” Still, the company’s breadth of new shows, such as critically acclaimed female wrestling comedy-drama “GLOW,” should help it continue to broaden its subscriber base.
“We expect Netflix’s original content ramp to continue to drive accelerating international net additions, especially as Netflix increases investment in local content overseas and expands genres such as movies and non-fiction,” UBS analyst Doug Mitchelson wrote in a research note.
Netflix will host a tape-delayed webcast at 6 p.m. ET.