Business16 July 2020
I am excited to announce that we have appointed Ted Sarandos to be Netflix co-CEO with me, and also elected him to our board of directors. He will continue as our Chief Content Officer. We have also appointed Greg Peters to be our Chief Operating Officer, in addition to his role as Chief Product Officer.
Ted and I first met in October 1999 after I read an article in Video Business and asked a mutual friend to connect us. We were just getting started and we needed someone with his deep experience in the video rental market.
Ted’s been instrumental to our success as a company. While I saw streaming coming and pushed for it, Ted drove the revolution in our content strategy, which was way ahead of its time and has been key to our continued success. It was typical of his ability to see where the industry - and consumer tastes - are headed. He’s built an extraordinary team, attracting some of the most creative and best entertainment executives from all around the world.
In terms of the day-to-day running of Netflix, I do not expect much to change. Our key executive leadership groups are unchanged. So think of Ted's well deserved promotion formalizing how we already run the business today.
Greg’s appointment as Chief Operating Officer reflects the strategic and analytical strengths he’s brought to our product team over the past 10 years. As we’ve grown, one of my biggest roles at Netflix has been to be broad across the company, getting to know many different people in every area of our business. This has helped Netflix stay mostly aligned, loosely coupled and very productive. In his new role, I want Greg to take on more of this work so that we continue to improve rapidly. Eventually he needs to know every corner of Netflix better than I do today.
As I told our employees earlier today, I still pinch myself when I think about what we've built together - with almost 200 million members and tremendous room for growth as consumers embrace Internet entertainment. If we continue to improve our service and the quality of our shows and films we can get to serve hundreds of millions more people over the next ten years. It’s why I am so excited about being at Netflix for the decade ahead.
These changes are part of a long process of succession planning. While transitions can be hard, I am optimistic because we have a well established culture that’s built to be flexible and many years to get good at this. I’m committed to Netflix for the long term. Here's to the next decade of great storytelling, better recommendations and a service that we hope brings joy, escape and a sense of connection to hundreds of millions of members around the world
Ted and Reed in Cuba in 2016.
I’m excited and honored to have been appointed co-CEO of Netflix. When Reed and I first met over 20 years ago, he described Netflix almost exactly as it now works. But at the time, I was skeptical. The Internet was still new and Netflix's main competitor, Blockbuster, was huge and had completely disrupted the business model of my previous company. Part of Reed's brilliance is his persistence and so I eventually said yes, back in 1999.
The other big early technology adopter in my life was my mother. Our family generally struggled but even if the phone or gas were cut off, she always insisted on having cable TV and a little dish to get HBO. So television and film became my great passions. Then, as a teenager, one of the first video stores in Phoenix opened up a few blocks from my house so I worked there to earn money for school. Watching films and TV all day, and hearing what customers liked, helped me understand people's dramatically different tastes and moods as well as the value of a good recommendation.
I’ve also been tremendously fortunate in the teams we’ve built at Netflix, as we’ve reinvented ourselves again and again to meet our members’ needs: from DVD to streaming, from licensing to originals, from series to film and from US to local language stories told by creators all around the world
My journey to co-CEO of Netflix has been as a fan of great entertainment. And that's my commitment to Netflix members going forward: to keep pushing the boundaries of what a consumer-first company can achieve for people who love stories.