Investor insight #14: And the award goes to…

Tuesday 02 March 2021

Portfolio insights, Investor insights

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Netflix dominated the Golden Globes awards this year, scooping up six wins, triple its closest competition. The Crown was crowned in all four of its nominated categories while The Queen’s Gambit took home two check mates. Noticeably, the wins are supported by viewer traction as The Crown was streamed over 16 billion minutes in 2020 while The Queen’s Gambit was streamed by more than 62 million accounts in its first month.

The accolades come as no surprise. While other studios and networks struggled to produce and release content in 2020 Netflix had new releases every week. This indicates its superior ability to quickly adapt to market conditions and customer demand with its digital direct-to-consumer strategy. 

Netflix revolutionised the industry in 2013 when it debuted House of Cards, which went on to become the first online-only television program to be nominated, let alone win, an Emmy award. Since then, the company has received over 480 nominations and 204 awards.

Netflix has created a virtuous cycle by leveraging its global scale to double down on content spend, producing more original content and building a larger and better content library, which ultimately helps it acquire more acclamations and users. Netflix’s ability to achieve quality at scale is unrivalled by traditional industry players especially as consumers increasingly shift towards streaming services driven by viewer desires for diversity, flexibility and personalisation.   

One exception is Disney, renowned for its quality content in both film and TV. The company’s assets continue to generate healthy returns for shareholders through its leading studios including Walt Disney Pictures, Searchlight Pictures, 21st Century Fox, Blue Sky, Marvel, Lucasfilm and Pixar Studios. These studios and their significant production budgets also attract their own ecosystem of the world’s best talent and this is reflected in the company’s consistent dominance in global award ceremonies.

The 2021 Golden Globe winner for Best Motion Picture – Drama and Best Director, Nomadland, was released by Searchlight Pictures in theatres and streamed on Hulu, both Disney assets. Searchlight Pictures alone has amassed 26 Golden Globe Awards, 47 BAFTA awards and 40 Academy Awards, winning the Best Picture Oscar five times in the last 12 years, an enviable track record for a single studio.

We’re not sure who will taste success at the upcoming Academy Awards but it’s likely that both Disney and Netflix will continue to dominate award ceremonies for many years, reflecting the quality of their content. With access to their extensive libraries and industry-leading content spend, we believe they will simultaneously lead in quantity as well, setting the scene for continued global dominance in streaming that will become increasingly difficult to run down. Investors should grab their popcorn – this is a story worth watching.

About the Author
Sally Fang

Sally Fang

Investment Analyst

Sally joined the investment team in January 2020 and is responsible for broad investigative research projects. While completing her studies she gained valuable investment experience through intern positions in the UK, China and Australia.

Sally holds a Bachelor of Economics and Finance from the University of Hong Kong and a Masters in Investment and Wealth Management (Distinction) from Imperial College Business School, London. She is a CFA Program participant, having successfully completed level III in 2020.