Surveys show big gains for Netflix in the UK and Brazil


Wall Street analyst Mark Mahaney suggests that Netflix is on track to leverage its strong hold in the United States and continue to notch “material” penetration in international markets.

“Netflix has achieved a level of sustainable scale, growth, and profitability that isn’t currently reflected in its stock price,” wrote RBC Capital Markets analyst Mahaney in Sunday’s note. “In its oldest International markets, it appears [to] be scaling to profitability just as quickly as the U.S. market did.”

Mahaney backed up his bullish report with data from his team’s recent internet user survey. The analyst found that a record 49 percent of UK respondents watch Netflix for TV or movies, just shy of YouTube’s 52 percent and far ahead of Amazon’s 32 percent. But consumer satisfaction in the UK also notched an all-time high.

Mahaney reiterated his findings on CNBC’s “Squawk Alley” Monday morning.

“The financial markets assume that Netflix can’t be as successful in international markets as they have been in the U.S.,” he said. “But our survey actually shows higher satisfaction subs outside of the U.S.”

The analyst explained that because many countries outside the U.S. do not have as competitive entertainment markets, Netflix may stand to perform better overseas.

RBC Capital Markets’ Mahaney reiterated his overweight rating and $210 price target, which represents 15 percent upside from Friday’s close. Netflix is one of the market’s best-performing stocks, rallying 47 percent this year through Friday compared with the S&P 500’s 11.7 percent gain.

In its third survey of Brazilian internet users, RBC Capital Markets found that Netflix is making steady headway in the largest Latin American market.

Akin to forward progress in the UK, a record high 77 percent of surveyed Brazilians watched Netflix.

“The results were again overwhelmingly positive… So positive that we’d caveat that there is likely sample bias occurring within the results, given that the respondents to this survey are likely active Internet users who are more likely to subscribe to Netflix in the first place,” cautioned Mahaney.

But to be sure, the analyst sees these Brazil results as an indicator that Netflix could serve as a bellwether for other international markets.

“We believe these results highlight that Netflix’s foray into Brazil has met with strong success so far,” he continued, referring to Netflix CEO Reed Hastings’s comments that characterized Brazil as a “rocket ship.”

“We also believe that this illustrates the potential for Netflix to reach material (~30%) penetration levels in multiple International markets.”

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