OTT Netflix founder Reed Hastings leaves

OTT Netflix founder Reed Hastings leaves

Reed Hastings, the founder of Netflix, who raised it as Grover’s largest online video service (OTT), stepped down as co-CEO on the 19th.


Netflix said in a shareholder letter, “Last year’s start was not smooth, but the finish was bright,” adding, “I think there is a clear way to accelerate growth again.”

In his retirement statement, Reed Hastings stressed that “founders should also evolve,” citing the resignation of Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and Microsoft founder Bill Gates as CEOs.

“We will become a bridge between the board of directors and the next co-CEO and invest more time in charity projects,” he said. “We will also focus on making Netflix’s stock value better.”

Hastings, who majored in computer science and mathematics, founded Netflix in Scotts Valley, California, in August 1997 with his first co-worker. Netflix’s first business was to rent DVDs by mail after receiving orders online from membership customers who paid monthly fees.Hastings came up with a startup item called a DVD rental service without a late fee because he had previously paid a $40 late fee for renting a DVD after borrowing it.

Netflix, which expanded its membership base and content list with the success of its business model, introduced a new service that allows users to watch videos on computers in 2007. It was the beginning of the streaming business that caused a tectonic shift in the content industry.

The industry analyzed that streaming was premature, but Netflix exploded based on various popular contents as if laughing at the outlook, and secured 100 million subscribers in 2017.

After the COVID-19 incident, the number of subscribers surpassed 200 million at the end of 2020 as it enjoyed the special non-face-to-face industry.

In the process of developing Netflix as the No. 1 OTT, he carried out management that emphasized autonomy and innovation. He said, “Rules without rules are Netflix’s rules,” establishing a culture that allows the company to make agile decisions centered on talented employees.

It was also pointed out that executives and employees who fail to produce results and lag behind innovation can be fired at any time, creating a harsh work environment of competition-firstism.

He also had a hard time in the first half of last year. The number of subscribers in the first quarter of 2022 decreased by 200,000 compared to the fourth quarter of the previous year, marking the first reverse growth in 11 years.

Since then, Hastings has been restructuring the company, including layoffs with co-CEO Ted Surandos, and launched an affordable advertising plan in November last year to increase its subscriber base and revenue again.

Netflix’s subscribers surged 7.66 million in the fourth quarter of 2022 and its members surpassed 230 million as of the end of last year. Stock prices, which have plummeted in the last six months, have risen nearly 50 percent, recovering again.

Hastings performed well in the third quarter of 2021, thanks to the biggest hit ever, “Squid Game,” wearing green gym clothes from the drama and holding a performance presentation event and comparing “Squid Game” to a content engine.

As Hastings stepped down from the management front, Netflix’s baton was handed over to co-CEOs Seorandos and Greg Peters.

Surandos has been co-CEO since July 2020, and Peters, who was promoted to Chief Operating Officer (COO), led the launch of the advertising plan.

Their task is to secure an advantage in streaming competition with Disney and Amazon and achieve results in the advertising business that has entered the low-cost plan launch.

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