Netflix now has 57.4 million global subscribers, according to its Q4 earnings letter to shareholders. The company said it added 13 million new members in 2014 alone, and ultimately generating over $1.3 billion in total revenue.
Overall, the numbers matched up pretty well with the streaming service’s US subscriber forecast (there are now 39.11 million subscribers state-side, as opposed to the projected 39.07 million). As far as international Netflix members are concerned, the company did better than expected, having reached 18.28 million total members in Q4 instead of the forecasted 17.99 million. This is better news for the company than last quarter, in which it generally overestimated how much it would grow by the end of Q3.
Though subscriber numbers have grown, the rate at which people are signing up for the service has gone down. In Q4 of 2013, Netflix got 2.3 million more US subscribers, while it only gained 1.9 million additional US members in Q4 2014.
Now, Netflix is blaming the lower new member rates on “a natural progression in our large US market as we grow,” according to CEO Reed Hastings and CFO David Wells in the shareholder letter (before, it was the increased prices, which the company deemed not to be the case as people with less money are still singing up for Netflix).
On the other hand, the international growth rate for the company has increased, going from 1.74 million last year to 2.43 million members in the last quarter of 2014. This comes as no great surprise, as the streaming service launched in multiple European countries (including France, Germany, and Belgium) in Q3.
As for expanding even further, say, into China, Hastings and Wells wrote, “For China, we are still exploring options — all of them modest.” By the end of Q1 2015, Netflix expects to grow to 61.4 million global members.