Netflix had a good week. It started when the company teamed up with DreamWorks Animation to expand their relationship, and it culminated in an announcement that the Netherlands will be its next expansion market for the leading video service.
The deal with DreamWorks Animation comes at an important time. Many young families are still venting about the Nickelodeon and Nick Jr. content that was removed from Netflix's streaming platform late last month. Offering 300 hours of original programming from DreamWorks Animation -- primarily in the form of new shows that the computer-animation studio will create based on its growing arsenal of characters -- will give young viewers more reasons to keep checking out Netflix by next year.
This is also an important evolutionary step at Netflix. Subscribers need to understand that, unlike optical discs, streaming licenses don't last forever. Content goes both ways, and Netflix has more often than not found a way to make it up to subscribers when popular shows leave its digital vault.
The other big move by Netflix was to announce that it will go Dutch later this year. Pushing into the Netherlands makes sense. Netflix now has more than 6 million subscribers for its streaming service outside the United States.
Yes, Netflix is still losing a lot money overseas, but its international operating loss narrowed in its latest quarter to the lowest that it's been in more than a year.
Keep those passport stamps coming, Netflix.
Briefly in the news
And now let's take a quick look at some of the other stories that shaped our week.
- Nokia was the subject of not one, but two rumored buyout reports. Things have been rough for the handset giant in recent years, but sometimes a stock gets too cheap to ignore.
- Idenix Pharmaceuticals shed 31% of its value on Friday, after the FDA requested more information on the biotech's preclinical hepatitis-C drug candidate. Indenix will need to address those concerns before moving on to the critical human trials. The payoffs are huge when a young biotech can get a treatment on the market, but the approval process isn't for the faint of heart.
- Microsoft backtracked on some of the controversial Xbox One features that were introduced a week earlier. It will no longer require users to go online every 24 hours, and gamers will be able to keep selling or lending their disc-based games.
Now look ahead
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