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9 Metrics Behind Netflix Inc.'s Record Quarter

By Daniel Sparks - Oct 17, 2017 at 10:35AM

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Netflix did it again. Here's how it's serving investors nice growth even after surpassing 100 million members.

For Netflix's (NFLX 1.03%) third quarter, the company kept up the expectation-beating results it delivered in Q2. The internet-TV giant delivered record revenue and huge growth in streaming members, helping justify Netflix's aggressive investments in original content and international expansion.

Here's a look at nine of the most mind-boggling figures from the quarter.

1. 5.3 million: When Netflix added 5.2 million members in its second quarter, the net additions were a big surprise. The figure easily exceeded the 3.2 million net additions in streaming members management had guided for. Expecting this momentum to continue in Q3, management forecasted 4.4 million new members during the quarter, well above the 3.6 million Netflix added in the third quarter of 2016.

But Netflix was still able to go above and beyond its optimistic guidance. It added 5.3 million new members during the quarter.

A group of six friends sitting in a darkened living room watching television

Image source: Getty Images.

2. 109 million: Showcasing the company's ability to keep growing its streaming members, Netflix now has about 109 million total streaming members, up 27% year over year.

3. 44%: Most of the growth in streaming members is coming from international markets. Netflix added about 4.5 million new international members during the quarter, bringing total international members to about 56.5 million. Total international streaming members were up 44% year over year.

4. 29%: To give the breakneck growth of Netflix's streaming members more context, consider this: The 15.5 million new streaming members added so far this year is 29% higher than how many it brought on board in the same period last year.

5. $62 million: Netflix's contribution profit, or the company's revenue less cost of revenue and marketing expenses, swung from a $69 million loss in the year-ago quarter to a profit of $63 million.

The higher gross profit was driven by a 30.3% year-over-year increase in revenue and a fatter operating margin of 7% (versus 4.6% in the year-ago quarter).

6. $209 million: Netflix's operating income also jumped, nearly doubling to $209 million.

7. 24%: Though Netflix's recently announced price increases in the U.S. won't start impacting results until later this year, investors can see the benefits of previous price increases in year-over-year revenue comparisons for the third quarter. Amazon said the primary drivers behind its 33% year-over-year rise in third-quarter streaming revenue was a 24% increase in the number of paid memberships and 7% growth in the average selling price of its memberships.

8. $3.3 billion: For its fourth quarter, Netflix provided bullish guidance. The company said it expects $3.27 billion. This would represent 32.1% year-over-year growth, marking an acceleration compared to the 30.3% year-over-year rise in revenue it reported in Q3.

9. 6.3 million: In line with past seasonal trends, Netflix expects fourth-quarter streaming member additions to be higher than third-quarter additions. Management forecasted for 6.3 million new streaming members during the quarter, up about 23% year over year.

What now?

Despite already tracking to exceed $11 billion in total revenue in 2017, Netflix believes there is plenty of growth ahead. It wants to invest aggressively to capture what it is calling a "once-in-a-generation" opportunity. Management says it has $17 billion in content commitments over the next several years, and plans to spend $7 to $8 billion on content in 2018 alone.

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