Netflix has recently announced that Albuquerque, New Mexico will be the site of their new United States production hub. Netflix has indicated that this will bring upwards of $1 billion in production money to New Mexico over the next ten years, and it’s also estimated that this will bring up to 1,000 production jobs per year. Terms of the deal aren’t being disclosed, but what is interesting is that this is the first purchase of a production studio by Netflix in the United States. What we do know about this deal, is that they’re buying ABQ Studios, which opened in 2007 and is currently owned by Pacifica Ventures.
This move comes after Netflix made plans for a significant expansion of its presence in Los Angeles. In fact, they signed a lease through 2031 on a 13-story tower in Hollywood, which is set to be completed in 2020 and sits on land adjacent to their existing L.A. offices and production facilities at the Sunset Bronson Studios lot. Which makes you wonder why Albuquerque, doesn’t it? Netflix is already currently producing shows in the area, including Chambers, and Messiah. These two shows have already created 700 jobs to fill crew member positions. With the acquisition of the new facility, they expect to produce additional film and TV series at the new location. This includes the apocalypse dramedy – Daybreak.
The state will provide up to $10 million under the Local Economic Development Act (LEDA). This will help Netflix with the purchase of the facility and subsequently move to New Mexico. In addition, the City of Albuquerque will commit up to $4.5 million in local LEDA funding for the project.
While this might be Netflix’s first production facility in the United States – it isn’t their first acquisition of a production facility. Over the summer, they launched their first European production hub in Madrid, in order to target Spanish-language productions. The plan is around drama series, which have been a priority and source of success for Netflix. That facility will be located at the Ciudad de la Tele (TV City), which is a new 22,000 square meter campus in Tres Cantos, which is a 20-minute drive north of Madrid.
ABQ Studios, Netflix’s future home in Albuquerque, comprises eight sound stages — including four 24,000-square-foot stages that can open up to a 48,000-square-foot shooting space — as well as production offices, mill space and a back lot. Major productions filmed in part at ABQ Studios include four seasons of “Breaking Bad,” Marvel’s “The Avengers,” Disney’s “The Lone Ranger” and “Sicario.”
This is big news for Netflix. It might not seem that way, but it signals that they have a lot more original content coming our way. Who doesn’t love Netflix’s original content? In addition, this is great news for the economy as they are employing people from the local community, and taking the business out of Los Angeles. That’s not to say that people in LA don’t need jobs, but I like the fact that this is improving economic growth in other parts of the United States (and ultimately the world). I suspect that we will start to see more of these production hubs in different spots throughout the United States as Netflix continues to expand.