Reed Hastings

Reed Hastings Steps Down as Co-cEO of Netflix

Reed Hastings, who helped start Netflix and was one of its co-CEOs, has quit as CEO. As executive chairman of the board, he is still working for the company.

Ted Sarandos, who was chief content officer before becoming co-CEO, and Greg Peters, who was chief product officer and COO before becoming co-CEO, will now work together as co-CEOs. Bela Bajaria, who used to be head of global TV, is now chief content officer for Netflix. Scott Stuber, who used to be head of global films, is now chairman of Netflix Film.

Hastings wrote in a tweet, “Ted and Greg are now co-CEOs.” “After 15 years of working together, we have a great shorthand, and I have a lot of faith in their ability to lead. With twice as much heart, there are twice as many ways to make members happy and speed up growth. “Proud to be Executive Chairman for many years to come.”

Thursday, Netflix announced its earnings for the fourth quarter of 2022. It added a net of 7.7 million new subscribers, which was a lot more than the 4.5 million it had previously predicted.

Reed Hastings wrote in a blog post that Netflix’s board has been talking about succession for a long time. As part of this, the company made Hastings and Sarandos co-CEOs in July 2020. They also gave Peters the title of chief operating officer in addition to his role as chief product officer.

Hastings says, “I’ve given more and more of Netflix’s management to Sarandos and Peters over the last two and a half years.” He said, “Given COVID and some recent problems in our business, it was a baptism by fire.” But they’ve both done a great job, making sure Netflix keeps getting better and making it clear how to speed up our revenue and earnings growth again. So both the board and I think now is a good time to finish my succession.”

Reed Hastings praised Sarandos for having “the early foresight and skill to push into original programming, which changed our trajectory as a company,” and for expanding into international originals, film, animation, and unscripted programming. Hastings wrote that Peters was “instrumental” in building partnerships, putting together and launching Netflix’s first ad-supported plan, and leading the company’s push into gaming.

Hastings said that in the future, he will help Greg and Ted and, like any good chairman, act as a link between the board and the co-CEOs. He also said, “I’ll be giving away more of my time to charity, and I’ll keep putting a lot of energy into making sure Netflix stock does well.”

In a statement, Sarandos said, “I want to thank Reed for his visionary leadership, friendship, and mentoring over the last 20 years. We’ve all learned a lot from his intellectual rigour, honesty, and willingness to take big risks, and we hope to work with him for many years to come.

Peters said, “It’s humbling and an honour to be named co-CEO of Netflix. Ted and I have worked together for a long time, and during that time we have grown to trust and respect each other a lot. We also want to better serve our members so that we can keep growing our business.

Sarandos said this about the promotions of Bajaria and Stuber: “Bela and Scott are great creative executives who have shown they can do their jobs well at Netflix. In 2022, we released some of Netflix’s most popular shows and movies, like “Wednesday,” “Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery,” “Purple Hearts,” “Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story,” “The Adam Project,” and “Harry & Meghan.” This shows how creative and innovative they are. I couldn’t be happier to work with them as we try to make people happy for many years to come.”

Hastings will lose a lot of money when he steps down as co-CEO. According to a Netflix 8-K filing with the SEC, he can get a $500,000 base salary and $2.5 million in stock options as executive chairman in 2023. As co-CEO, he was set to make $34.7 million this year, mostly in the form of stock.

Peters’ pay will go up by 44%, from up to $24 million before to up to $34.65 million as co-CEO. This includes a $3 million salary, $17.325 million in options, and a $14.325 million performance-based bonus.

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