Reed Hastings steps down as Netflix co-CEO to succeed Greg Peters
Bela Bajaria and Scott Stuber have also taken on new positions at the streamer.
Netflix co-founder Reed Hastings has resigned as co-CEO, it was announced Thursday. He will be succeeded by Greg Peters, former chief operating officer of Netflix, who will work alongside Ted Sarandos.
Hastings announced the news in a letter posted on Netflix’s press page, coinciding with the streamer’s Q4 2022 earnings report. According to the letter, Hastings will now become the streamer’s executive chairman. The letter also announced that current head of Netflix TV, Bela Bajaria, has been promoted to chief content officer, while Scott Stuber, head of original films, has been named president of Netflix Film.
The news comes on the same day that Netflix released its earnings for the fourth quarter of 2022. The streamer added 7.66 million global paid subscribers during the quarter, compared with an initial forecast of 4.5 million subscribers, but underperformed on actual revenue of $55 million and 12 cents per share.
According to the letter, Hastings and Netflix’s board have been planning a succession at the streamer for years, with Sarandos promoted to co-CEO in 2020 and Peters to COO that same year as part of the succession process. Hastings also wrote that for the past two and a half years, the two of them have largely taken control of the company.
“Our board has been discussing succession planning for years (even founders have to grow!). As part of that process, in July 2020, we promoted Ted to co-CEO and Greg to COO in July 2020 – and over the past 2 1/2 years, I’ve increasingly given them control of Netflix,” Hastings said in the letter. “This has been a baptism of fire given the COVID and recent challenges within our business. But they’ve both done incredibly well, ensuring Netflix continues to grow and create a clear path to accelerate our revenue and earnings growth. So the board and I believe it is time for me to complete my succession.”
Writing about her new job at the company, Hastings explained that she will serve as a bridge between the CEOs and Sarandos and Peters while taking time away from Netflix to focus on personal philanthropic efforts.
“We enter 2023 as a company with renewed momentum and a clear path to accelerate our growth,” Sarandos wrote. “I am excited about Ted and Greg’s leadership and their ability to make the next 25 years even better than the first.”
Read Hastings’ full letter below:
I am very proud of our first 25 years and very excited about our next quarter century. We can do a lot more to make the world more fun and bring more joy to our members.
Our board has been discussing succession planning for years (even the founders have to grow!). As part of that process, in July 2020, we promoted Ted to co-CEO and Greg to COO in July 2020 – and over the past 2 1/2 years, I’ve increasingly given them control of Netflix.
It’s been a baptism of fire given the COVID and recent challenges within our business. But they’ve both done incredibly well, ensuring Netflix continues to grow and create a clear path to accelerate our revenue and earnings growth. So the board and I believe it is time for me to complete my succession.
Starting today, Greg Peters will become Ted’s Co-CEO from COO. I will continue to serve as Executive Chairman, a role often taken by founders (Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates, etc.) after passing the CEO baton to others. Ted, Greg and I have worked closely together in various capacities for 15 years. As is common in long, effective relationships, we each learned how to bring out the best in each other. I look forward to working with them in this role for many more years.
Ted and Greg have developed a great deal of trust and respect for each other through their shared successes and failures. Plus, they can always be counted on to put Netflix’s interests first. These qualities, combined with their complementary skills, deep understanding of entertainment and technology, and proven track record at Netflix, create a unique opportunity for faster growth and greater long-term success as Co-CEO.
Looking back, Ted had the foresight and skill to commit to original programming, changing the trajectory of our company. It then quickly expanded into international originals, film, animation and unscripted works – bets that helped broaden our content offering and took courage despite skepticism. Greg played an important role in developing our partnerships, building and launching advertising, pushing us towards deeper personalization, rebuilding our talent organization and strengthening our culture. He also spent several years in Japan as the country’s CEO launching our early efforts in Japanese originals and currently developing our games initiative.
For myself, I will help Greg and Ted and, like any good president, I will be a bridge from the board to the co-CEOs. I will also spend more time on philanthropy and remain very focused on Netflix stock doing well.
Today we elected Béla Bajaria as Netflix Film’s Chief Content Officer and Scott Stuber as Netflix Film’s President. It’s been amazing to see the huge progress we’ve made in TV and film under their leadership.
As a company, we are starting 2023 with new momentum and a clear path to accelerate our growth. I am excited about Ted and Greg’s leadership and their ability to make the next 25 years even better than the first.
The next chapter of Netflix and our leadership is here.
Register: Stay up to date with the latest movie and TV news! Subscribe to our email newsletter here.