India has one of the most extensive Netflix libraries in the world

So much choice in India.
So much choice in India.
Image: AP Photo/Christophe Ena
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In just two-and-a-half years since its launch in India, American video streaming platform Netflix has grown its library over five-fold.

With 4,706 titles, Netflix’s Indian library is its sixth-most extensive among 73 countries analysed by comparison website Finder India last week. Back when Netflix entered India, it had just 826 titles.

Japan’s 6,032 films and TV shows topped the chart, indexing 28% more titles than those listed in the Indian catalogue. Meanwhile, Indonesia’s content library ranked last with 66% fewer titles than India at 1,586.

“With such a competitive industry in India, we’re not surprised to see Netflix trying to step up with more content for viewers here,” said Fred Schebesta, co-founder and CEO of Finder India. “However, we are still behind Japan and the US in terms of the sheer number of content, so it would be good to see Netflix taking it even further.”

Films dominate Netflix’s Indian content, according to Finder India. This is in line with most other geographies where the California-based streaming service operates. Moreover, the Indian film industry is one of the world’s biggest, producing almost 2,000 movies a year, according to the latest report (pdf) by the Central Board of Film Certification.

In India, Netflix has inked deals with Shah Rukh Khan’s Red Chillies Entertainment, Anurag Kashyap’s Phantom Films, and Anil Kapoor Film and Communication Network to compete with international and local rivals.

It is also looking to add more localised content. Netflix has reportedly allocated up to Rs600 crore ($88 million) per year for original content in India.

Earlier this year, it released its first made-in-India original movie, Love Per Square Foot. Its second, Lust Stories, an anthology of four short films directed by filmmakers Zoya Akhtar, Karan Johar, Anurag Kashyap, and Dibakar Banerjee, is slated for a mid-June release. The company is also working on several other such projects, including Saif Ali Khan-starrer Sacred Games and Selection Day, a series based on Aravind Adiga’s novel White Tiger.

India, with the world’s second-largest internet user base, is critical for video streaming platforms like Netflix. However, the company has not had a smooth ride in the country so far. In terms of market share, Netflix ranks below local players Hotstar and Voot, and American rival Amazon.