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Next up for Netflix: An expansion to South Korea, Italy or the Middle East?

Netflix isn’t done with its international expansion: After launching in much of continental Europe, the company now has its sights set on Asia, the Middle East and some of the remaining European countries — at least, that’s what a recent job offer is suggesting. Last week, Netflix posted a job offer for a language specialist that included the following part:

[blockquote person=”” attribution=””]We are looking for highly motivated individuals with the right mix of technical, organizational and communication skills to provide localization for the Netflix experience in the following languages: Arabic, Vietnamese, Japanese, Korean, Italian, Polish, and Hungarian.[/blockquote]

To be fair, it’s unlikely that [company]Netflix[/company] will launch in all of those markets, at least not any time soon. The company has in the past posted a number of these job offers, and often buried its actual target markets in lists of seemingly unrelated countries.

In 2011, it looked for localization specialists fluent in “Turkish, Dutch, Russian, French, Hindi, German, Italian, Danish, Korean, Finnish, Japanese, and Spanish.” The company subsequently launched in Denmark and Finland, and has since also expanded to the Netherlands, Germany and France. In 2013, it also looked for folks fluent in “Turkish, Dutch, Hindi, French, and Korean.”

South Korea seems to be a recurring theme in these ads, and entering the country would be an interesting opportunity for Netflix. South Korea’s broadband infrastructure is amongst the best in the world, enabling the company to stream even 4K programming without many of the issues it faces in the U.S.

South Korea as well as Middle Eastern countries would also be interesting to Netflix from a content licensing standpoint, as the company could make use of the crossover appeal of some of its international content. Korean dramas have proven to be popular around the world, and Arab audiences in particular have been drawn to Korean as well as Latin American content.

However, it’s also possible that Netflix could target markets without any language barrier next. An expansion to Australia and New Zealand has long been rumored, and Spain could be a natural extension of the company’s European aspirations as well as its existing investments into Spanish-language content, due to its presence in Latin America.

One Response to “Next up for Netflix: An expansion to South Korea, Italy or the Middle East?”

  1. The effects of globalization are finally reaching the entertainment industry. Everyone seems surprised by the popularity of Korean dramas outside of Korea, but the truth is that quality content isn’t bound by geographic borders. As the internet replaces cable television as the main conduit for entertainment content to reach viewers, consumers will feel no need to stick to shows or movies originating in their home countries. Just like with physical goods and labor, if content from overseas is significantly cheaper or higher in quality, it will be in demand.