HBO has reached 74 million subscribers worldwide and WarnerMedia will invest more than $18 billion in content this year alone to shrink the gap with Netflix and Disney.
A three-horse race
Netflix is leading the pack with 214 million subscribers while Disney+ boasts 118 million subscribers. HBO reached 74 million by the end of 2021 but that includes both HBO Max and HBO channel subscribers.
HBO Max hopes to shrink the gap in the 2022 and the coming years, and CEO Jason Kilar expects the streaming wars to become a three-horse race at the front.
- "It's fair to say it's becoming a three-horse race at the front of the pack," Jason Kilar, CEO of WarnerMedia, which owns HBO Max, said in an interview with Financial Times.
WarnerMedia is planning to invest more than $18 billion in content this year. This compares to around $17 billion and $33 billion for Netflix and Disney, respectively. Disney's budget also covers expensive sports rights.
HBO Max expanded to Andorra, Denmark, Finland, Norway, Spain, and Sweden in October 2021. In 2022, HBO Max will launch in the following territories: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Montenegro, Netherlands, North Macedonia, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, and Turkey.
As part of the HBO Max launch in Europe, Warner Bros reduced the theatrical window for its latest blockbuster movies to 45 days in the Nordics last year, and this year in Spain, Portugal, Netherlands, Greece, Iceland and Central and Eastern Europe.
HBO Max is planning to be present in 190 territories by 2026.
- Source: Financial Times