Original Series Help Netflix Turn a Tidy Profit

Proliferation of homegrown content is moving the needle for streaming services

Following its first foray into original programming, Netflix put up first-quarter numbers that exceeded Wall Street’s expectations. Thanks in part to the success of its $100 million David Fincher potboiler, House of Cards, the company generated a profit of $31.8 million—up appreciably from an operating loss of $1.9 million in the year-ago period.