Netflix has a China strategy. It doesn’t involve launching there soon

on May10
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Netflix CEO Reed Hastings speaks during an interview on day two of the Netflix See What's Next: Asia event at the Marina Bay Sands on November 9, 2018 in Singapore.

Ore Huiying | Getty Images

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings speaks during an interview on day two of the Netflix See What’s Next: Asia event at the Marina Bay Sands on November 9, 2018 in Singapore.

Netflix has a China strategy, but that doesn’t involve launching its streaming service in the world’s second-largest economy.

Instead, the U.S.-based streaming company has recently been spending more money on acquiring rights to Mandarin-language content and producing its own originals.

In September, the technology giant unveiled the cast for its Mandarin-language original TV series called “Nowhere Man.” In January, it kicked off production for two more originals, called “Triad Princess” and “The Ghost Bride.” Two of the shows will be filmed in Taiwan and one in Malaysia.

The aim is to create shows for the millions of Mandarin speakers outside of China. It’s also looking to create or acquire shows that have global appeal.

Earlier this week, Netflix launched “The Wandering Earth” on its platform. That’s been called China’s first space epic and is the third-highest grossing film of 2019, according to Box Office Mojo. It was a huge hit in China when it was released earlier this year and Netflix has brought it to the global audience.

Netflix has also turned to partnering with Chinese streaming companies. On Thursday, Alibaba-owned streaming platform Youku said Netflix had bought the exclusive distribution rights outside of China for “I Hear You,” a 24-episode romantic comedy.

Netflix declined to comment on that development when contacted by CNBC.



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