(CNN) – Growth in the U.S. market is slowing for Netflix. Now the digital media subscription service is branching out into Latin America. It’s launching its first original Spanish TV show Friday — called Club De Cuervos.
Championship football, fame and power. Netflix first original Spanish language series – club de cuervos- has all the makings of a crowd-pleaser. And just like football, there’s a lot on the line.
Gaz alazraki directed Mexico’s highest ever grossing film – Nosotros Los Nobles, and that led to Netflix approaching him for this project.
Alazraki said, “The humor is very raw. It is very dark. And it is very unusual to see that because network TV doesn’t allow for that kind of tone.” The streaming giant is hope the story will resonate in a key market.
Netflix admits it was not easy creating brand awareness in Latin America, but they’ve built about five-million subscribers and they think now is the time to invest in Spanish language content.
With an estimated 68 million broadband households in Latin America, the market could offset slowing subscriber growth in the United States.
Vice President of International Content for Netflix Erik Barmack said, “As we become more mature as a business we are going to have a bigger and bigger audience from outside of the United States. So I think we want to be thoughtful about global programming and telling stories that are uniquely differentiated around the world.”
A marketing push is under way ahead of the release. Many young consumers we spoke to still needed to be won over.
Netflix won’t comment on marketing or production costs – but its clear where their priorities lie.
Netflix is sacrificing short term profits in order to grow and grow and grow in these international markets. It’s determined to have a footprint all over the world. And so far, investors are willing to go along for the ride.
For Alazraki, the project has brought a sense of pressure but he is remaining philosophical. Alazraki said, “Time-wise yes I need to deliver against a date and that is very stressing, but there’s no way to know if you’re going to do something that works or not. So what you try to do is something that you like.”
A worthy goal for a project that could score big for Netflix.