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Netflix Names New Co-CEOs in Q4 Earnings as Hastings Steps Down

Netflix co-founder and co-CEO Reed Hastings stepped down from his role in a succession plan as the streamer announced fourth-quarter earnings.

Netflix named a new co-CEO Thursday as part of a fourth-quarter earnings report that missed on earnings but vastly exceeded expectations on its newly added subscribers.

Co-founder Reed Hastings is moving from co-CEO to executive chairman, completing a succession plan he said was in the works for years. COO Greg Peters joins Ted Sarandos, who joined Hastings atop Netflix’s org chart in 2020, as co-CEOs.

“It was a baptism by fire, given COVID and recent challenges within our business,” Hastings said. “But they’ve both managed incredibly well, ensuring Netflix continues to improve and developing a clear path to reaccelerate our revenue and earnings growth. So the board and I believe it’s the right time to complete my succession.”

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After a rocky third quarter that saw the streaming giant lose subscribers, have its stock price plummet, and usher in a pivot to an advertising model the company previously said it would never employ, Netflix stock was up as much as 8% in after-hours trading despite a seemingly mixed report.

Netflix stock reported just 12 cents in earnings per share, well short of the 45-cent expectations. While quarterly revenue exactly met expectations at $7.85 billion, the company added 7.66 million paid subscribers, crushing the 4.57 million expected number. It puts the number of paid global subscribers at 231 million, the high watermark for the 26-year-old brand.

Netflix also named Bela Bajaria chief content officer and Scott Stuber chairman of Netflix Film. As the streamer aims to crack down on password sharing, we’ll see if it continues to add subscribers and revenue or see those consumers defect to competitors as Netflix moves on from the Hastings era.

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About The Author
Shlomo Sprung
Shlomo Sprung
Shlomo Sprung is a Senior Staff Writer at Boardroom. He has more than a decade of experience in journalism, with past work appearing in Forbes, MLB.com, Awful Announcing, and The Sporting News. He graduated from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism in 2011, and his Twitter and Spotify addictions are well under control. Just ask him.