It is quite obvious how much havoc the Covid-19 pandemic has wrought in almost every nation around the world. Lives have been lost and our normal ways of life have been severely disrupted. In economic activities, livelihood has been lost and severely affected with businesses having to shut down as many became unsustainable.
Creative Industries are one of the most affected industries from this global pandemic. The Inter-American Development Bank estimates that the creative economy represents 6.1% of the world’s economy.
The irony is that while so many businesses found it impossible to stay afloat, some others actually thrived. One of such companies has been the online video streaming platform, Netflix. Netflix said the shutdown of film and TV production around the world had temporarily increased its free cash flow as delays in some programming and film production have seen millions turn to the platform for entertainment.
In fact, Netflix reached a whopping 15.8 million paid subscribers in the first three months of 2020 amid the coronavirus pandemic which has forced people to stay at home. The California-based company had expected 7.2 million subscribers but witnessed a more than double rise in paid subscribers. The global total reached 182.9 million from January through March, Reuters reported.
The report stated that the audience has binged on shows like the Tiger King. It also came up with shows that gained popularity like Love is Blind and Money Heist. The company's biggest expansion from January through March came from Europe, where it added 4.4 million new customers.
According to a report by AFP which cites earning figures, Netflix made a profit of $709 million, on revenue of $5.8 billion in the first three months of the pandemic year. As a result of this expansion in subscribers base and the consequent growth in revenue, the company has decided to support Filmmakers, productions and others involved in the industry.
The launch by Netflix is in partnership with Mexico City-based non-profit Ambulante, the $750,000 Miradas fund will support more than 80 productions that have been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.
According to the announcement on Netflix’s website, this will benefit 500 emerging, mid-career, and established filmmakers; all from indigenous and Afro-descendant communities including the Zapotec Serrano, Totonaco, Mixteco, Náhuatl, and Purépecha first peoples.
Almost 75% of these communities are currently located in Mexico with the rest in Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, and Nicaragua.
Netflix Miradas Fund
A committee made up of 11 experts, social leaders, and key actors in the field of community cinema in Mexico and Central America selected the projects that were helped by the fund. All these projects – which represent a variety of genres including documentary, fiction, animation, and experimental – are currently being shot, or are in post-production.
Netflix’s Miradas fund announcement comes a little more than a month after the streaming giant pledged $5 million towards programs that support female filmmakers.
It also comes after a year that saw the company pledge $5 million to Black creators, youth organizations, and businesses – and announce a $100 million fund to help film and TV industry workers whose productions were upended by the pandemic.
In addition to the rising competition, the launch is a strategy to increase the number of free trial subscriptions during the social isolation policy is a goodwill measure that will translate into brand loyalty. Netflix has an opportunity to enrich their brand value through corporate responsibility; high performance in times like these require high integrity and empathy to the extraordinary needs of the situation, while still providing the best service to all their stakeholders.
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