Netflix will shell out no less than $6 billion dollars on video in 2017. Amazon is reportedly not far behind and is planning to increase its video budget to $4.5 billion this year, reports BusinessInsider.
More than double HBO’s budget
Amazon has already shown willingness to spend big on original productions with ‘The Grand Tour’, big-budget TV series, and a handful of movies.
In 2017, the retail giant will spend approximately $4.5 billion on video, according to JPMorgan. The figure includes both original and licensed video content.
$4.5 billion is still behind Netflix’s projected $6 billion budget for 2017 but Amazon is increasing its video budget faster. The company has not confirmed the number but CFO Brian Olsavsky said in July 2016 that Amazon would “nearly double” its investments in video.
If accurate, Amazon’s $4.5 billion budget will be more than double HBO’s $2 billion budget for 2016. It should also allow Amazon to keep pace with Netflix’s spending on original movies. While Amazon has begun financing movies, Netflix has partnered with more impactful stars such as Brad Pitt, Will Smith, Robert De Niro, and Al Pacino.
Global launch & sports rights
Like Netflix, Amazon has expanded globally. In December 2016, the company launched a scaled-down – and cheaper – version of its Prime Video streaming service worldwide and used the former Top Gear hosts’ The Grand Tour to help it appeal to a global audience.
Amazon is also moving into live sports with a $50 million deal for 10 Thursday night NFL games, according to The Wall Street Journal.
As streaming players are targeting the cable bundle and simultaneously challenging status quo in the movie industry, budgets are likely to increase even further. Netflix is still the dominant player but Amazon is expanding aggressively.