With Netflix stock shooting through the roof, Reed Hastings has been cashing in.So far this year, Netflix's chairman and CEO has sold stock worth $103.8 million, according to regulatory filings. His latest sale, on July 24, amounted to $20.7 million in shares.Hastings still owns stock worth more than $2 billion at Netflix's current share price. As of April 10, the exec owned 11.82 million shares of Netflix common stock (including options to purchase 5.96 million shares), representing a 2.71% ownership...
Catapulted by the insight that consumers favored a flat-rate subscription model with no late fees in the DVD rental era, Reed Hastings built a subscription-VOD streaming giant. Netflix carries a stock market capitalization surpassing $50 billion today (Hastings owns about 3%) and has a $6 billion programming budget set for 2017 to help grow the business worldwide in over 200 countries.
Netflix has transitioned brilliantly to the streaming era by allowing subscribers to binge entire seasons of content and expertly mining its vast audience data. That big data is analyzed to tailor the user experience and also direct Netflix program acquisitions. Having already thoroughly disrupted the TV industry, Netflix is currently embarking on a diversification into film that should prove just as difficult for the traditional exhibition business.
Netflix’s rocket ride has not been without its bumps. 2011 threw Hastings the biggest challenge of his career when his decision to separate the DVD and streaming operations was a disaster that sent the stock tumbling.
Before Neflix, Hastings founded Pure Software, a debugging tool for engineers. He later pocketed $750 million from selling the company, funneling the proceeds into starting Netflix, which he co-founded with Marc Randolph.
Hastings is a Facebook board member and is a former Microsoft board member. He is a graduate of Bowdoin College, and has a master’s degree in computer science from Stanford University.