Netflix, which is already available in more than 50 countries, has finally cracked a major new market. According to VentureBeat, Netflix is making its way to Japan on September 2. The launch is Netflix’s first in Asia, and is part of a major push to operate in at least 200 countries by the close of 2016.
The news comes several weeks after Netflix, one of Fast Company‘s most innovative companies this year, announced stellar second-quarter earnings–particularly in the growth of its international subscriber base. Japan is just one of multiple international locales on Netflix’s radar: The streaming service will be introduced to Italy, Portugal, and Spain by October–and, eventually, Iceland as well.
As part of its competition with HBO and cable television in general, Netflix has amassed a $5 billion war chest that is largely earmarked for global rights acquisition fees and original content development.
Netflix sees foreign markets as essential to its continued growth. The company’s ambitious historical epic Marco Polo was designed with the Asian market in mind, even though Netflix had no presence in Asia till now.