Reed Hastings
Claude Paris/AP/REX/Shutterstock
United States



Co-Founder / CEO

A software engineer, Hastings was already envisioning streaming entertainment over the Internet when he co-founded Netflix in 1997 as a DVD purveyor. Ten years later, he launched a subscription-video service that now dominates the field, serving more than 130 million customers in 190-plus countries. Subscribers binge-watch entire TV seasons, and the company mines the resulting audience data. He continually pushed Netflix to disrupt industry business models, creating a distribution powerhouse that spends billions on licensed TV shows and movies and original content, with consistent spoils come awards season. The CEO, who also serves on Facebook’s board, founded debugging-tool vendor Pure Software, pocketing $750 million from the com-panys sale and using the proceeds to seed Netflix.


  • Facebook
  • Netflix
  • Pure Software


  • Stanford University (CA, USA)
  • Bowdoin College (ME, USA)

Variety Honors

  • 2017 Variety500 Honoree
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News from Variety

Does Netflix Really Have a ‘Culture of Fear’ Problem?

Does Netflix Really Have a ‘Culture of Fear’ Problem?

Netflix is a company whose unsentimental culture of firing underperforming employees has "unsettle[d] the ranks," according to the Wall Street Journal's lengthy, detailed piece published Thursday.But as in-depth as it was, the Journal's 4,500-word story lacked some context. Namely: How happy are Netflix employees in general compared with other companies? And, more to the point, is its approach to culling the staff -- which Netflix has fully disclosed for years -- a problem for the business?Yes, Netflix's practice of quickly...


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