Netflix CEO Reed Hastings recently said the company was “frustrated” that it couldn’t get subscriber growth momentum going in India. But the company’s attitude towards the Indian market and Indian content have always suffered from severe strategic missteps, and perhaps most fatally, an unwillingness to break new ground.
Over the last five years, it dragged its feet on commissioning world-class hits from India, fired executives who may have made a difference, and manifested an inward-looking posture that left it eating the competition’s dust. But low subscriber growth in India is not Netflix’s biggest failure.
It’s not Netflix that failed in India. It’s Netflix India that failed globally.