Netflix has posted its fourth-quarter results, and the most interesting takeaway is that it managed to add enough subscribers just a few hours after the quarter closed on 1 January to hit 75 million members.
The streaming giant added 5.59 million members worldwide during the fourth quarter, bringing it up to 74.76 million subscribers total, but then it squeezed in another 240,000 subscribers by New Year's Day, Netflix announced Tuesday.
Wall Street thought Netflix would add 5.12 million subscribers (1.62 million domestically and 3.5 million internationally). Although it missed that domestic target by about 60,000 subscribers, it grew more than expected elsewhere.
Beyond subscriber growth, Netflix said its members streamed 42.5 billion hours of content in 2015, which is significantly up from 29 billion hours the year prior. The company posted $1.67 billion in revenue, though analysts forecasted $1.83 billion in revenue. Nevertheless, Netflix shares soared 9 per cent in after-hours trading after having closed 4 per cent higher at $107.89.
Another financial tick against the company involves international expansion costs. The company spent $109 million during the quarter and will spend another $114 million in the current quarter in order to continue growing throughout the rest of the world.
In a letter to shareholders, CEO Reed Hastings said: "We are thrilled to be available worldwide... What fun we are having making our service popular in Thailand, Poland, Australia, Chile, France and over 180 other countries."
He also admitted growth in the US seems to be "harder than in the past".
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