The co-founder of Netflix, Reed Hastings has decided to step down from his role as the co-chief executive officer of the company. This decision has come as a shock for everyone, especially when Netflix has finally shown growth in subscriber count after seeing some of the lowest engagement rates throughout 2022. Throughout 2022, Netflix was one of many entertainment companies which reported a decline in their engagement numbers as people were holding on to their money because of the growing inflation and slowed economic growth. Amid rising inflation, Netflix also struggled to produce well-rated shows which repelled people from Netflix, as other OTT platforms such as Disney, Amazon, HBO, etc. were offering better shows at significantly reasonable rates. But still, by the end of 2022, Netflix reported a whopping growth of seven million new subscribers, which was way more than the expected figures based on the buzz surrounding Netflix throughout last year.
During the last few months of 2022, Netflix produced some of its best shows such as Wednesday, the spin-off series on Adams Family. The documentary on Prince Harry and his wife Megan also managed to garner tremendous engagement in the mainstream media and across the global population. Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, one of many films which were exclusively released on Netflix was also praised worldwide because of its thrilling plot which kept the audience engaged with the streaming giant Netflix. The movie currently sits at 92% critics score and 93% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes. Because of such remarkable performance at the end of the year, the company said that it managed to end the year with a bright finish, despite having a rough start.
Reed Hastings founded Netflix in 1997, over 25 years ago. The company started as a video-rental company but later developed into a streaming service company, because of the innovative vision of its founders. Reed Hastings and Marc Randolph made Netflix one of the biggest streaming platforms in the world through continuous innovation and addressing what consumers want. Because of this, Netflix became the platform of some of the most iconic shows such as Arcane, Stranger Things, 13 Reasons Why, and many others. Because of Netflix’s huge impact on the streaming industry, Reed Hastings is considered the early pioneer of the streaming business. Many Hollywood studios started their own OTT platforms after taking inspiration from Netflix. Hence, one can easily understand the importance of Reed Hastings in Netflix as a company.
Even though Hastings is leaving the position of CEO of Netflix during one of the toughest times, one cannot deny his efforts which have offered Netflix a subscriber base of over 230 million people from across the globe. Although he is leaving his position as the co-CEO of the company, he will continue to be part of the company as the executive chairman of Netflix. Ted Sarandos and Greg Peters, the senior executives at Netflix, will be running the company from now on. However, many believed that Reed Hastings is the reason why Netflix became this successful company. Hence, questions are being raised about the future of strategic directions that Netflix will follow in the future.