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Netflix hikes prices in Belgium: here’s what’s next

Credit: Pxfuel

Online streaming platform Netflix will hike the prices of two of its subscription formulas, citing a surge of original content production including its first original Belgian series.

The media platform will raise the monthly prices of its standard and premium plans in Belgium and other EU countries, following a similar increase introduced in the US market at the start of the year.

Subscribers to the standard plan, which allows High Definition (HD) streaming in up to two different screens, will see their subscription rise by €1 to €11.99 per month.

Premium subscribers, who can stream in HD in up to four different screens, will pay an additional €2, with the fee for the platform’s top tier rising to €15.99 per month.

The basic subscription formula will keep the €7.99 monthly price it has had since the launch of Netflix in Belgium in 2014.

Newcomers to the platform are already subject to the price hikes while existing users will be notified of the changes a month in advance, with Netflix saying that they will start sending out notification emails within two weeks, Le Soir reports.

Surge in original production content as competition stiffens

Netflix said that the price hikes come as the company beefs up production, citing “substantial investments” made in original productions, according to De Standaard.

The US company has amassed billions in debt since its first ventured into the production industry in 2012, with its original content encountering viewer success and, increasingly, recognition from the industry, including two best picture nominations for the 2020 Academy Awards.

“We have many productions planned in Belgium,” the company told the Flemish outlet, as it prepares to launch ‘Into the Night,’ its first original Belgian series, as well as the second season of ‘Undercover,’ a Belgo-Dutch TV show.

At the end of September, Netflix announced that they had started filming the series, which will be directed by a duo of Belgian directors, Inti Calfat and Dirk Verheye, and was penned by the writer of Netflix’s hit series Narcos.

The show will feature a Belgian and international cast and centre around a group of passengers on a flight out of Brussels Airport, and is set for launch in 2020.

The price hikes come as a growing number of players crowd the Belgian and international online streaming markets, after the launch of Disney+ in November closed off a year marked by Apple and Amazon’s own push into the business.

Gabriela Galindo
The Brussels Times