Dec. 31, 2013, 3:39 AM
- Netflix (NFLX) CEO Reed Hastings will receive a pay rise of 50% in 2014 after a year in which shares in the video-streaming company surged almost 300% and its TV programming won three Emmy awards.
- Hastings will earn a salary of $3M and $3M in stock options, up from $2M and $2M respectively. Fellow senior managers will also enjoy pay hikes, including CFO David Wells and Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos.
- See also: Netflix terminates poison pill. (8-K)
Dec. 30, 2013, 4:16 PM
- The plan - in which all shareholders would have the right to acquire more stock if any single shareholder held more than a 10% stake - was put in place about 14 months ago to thwart Carl Ichan's quest to boost his holdings in the company.
- The stock's more than a 4-bagger since then and agendas have changed.
- NFLX -0.15% AH
- Press release
Dec. 30, 2013, 4:08 PM
- Netflix (NFLX -0.1%) is offering a $6.99/month subscription plan to new sign-ups willing to limit their streaming to one screen at a time, and to standard-definition content. The company's regular $7.99/month plan allows users to simultaneously stream SD or HD content to two devices; more than a few users leverage this feature to share access with friends/relatives.
- The new offering, not yet available to existing subs, comes eight months after Netflix launched an $11.99/month family plan that provides access to four streams at once. Reed Hastings stated in July uptake has been "minimal," as expected.
- Assuming it's provided to existing subs, Netflix's move could make a future price hike (something many bulls are counting on) more palatable to some cost-sensitive users, by allowing them to obtain a lower price by "downgrading" to a single-screen plan.
Dec. 27, 2013, 1:54 PM
- With high-flying Twitter (downgraded by Macquarie) leading the way, several Internet momentum plays that have delivered big 2013 gains are seeing some year-end profit-taking.
- In addition to Twitter, notable decliners include Netflix (NFLX -2.8%), Pandora (P -3.6%), Trulia (TRLA -2.7%), Zillow (Z -2.4%), and Groupon (GRPN -1.9%).
- On the other hand, many Chinese Internet names are adding to this year's gains. In addition to Baidu (buying Perfect World's e-book unit) and Ctrip (received a bullish T.H. Capital note), gainers include Sina (SINA +4.9%), Dangdang (DANG +4.8%), YY (YY +4%), 58.com (WUBA +3%), and NetEase (NTES +3.4%). An overnight Shanghai rally is likely helping.
Dec. 27, 2013, 7:14 AM| 4 Comments
Dec. 17, 2013, 3:38 PM
- The NPD Group is out with the SVOD Report which looks at streaming activity between January and October of this year.
- The top movies streamed were The Hunger Games (LGF), The Avengers (DIS) and The Lorax (CMCSA) which are all movies aimed at younger audiences. The rankings go a long way toward explaining the tent-pole strategy of major studios.
- Data on TV streaming showed the most activity was for Breaking Bad (AMCX), How I Met Your Mother (CBS), and AMC's The Walking Dead.
- Netflix (NFLX) doesn't like to share ratings information, but NPD has the back of investors. Its data shows 11% of all Netflix users streamed Arrested Development at least once during the six weeks following its release. The mark was lower for House of Cards (5%) and Hemlock Grove (4%), although the penetration rates compare favorably to the broadcast world.
- SVOD share of the total home video market rose to over 25% during the year.
Dec. 16, 2013, 9:09 AM
- Netflix (NFLX) announces it will have the spin-off to Breaking Bad available to subscribers in Europe and Latin America shortly after its debut in the U.S.
- Customers in the U.S. and Canada will have to wait until the final episode airs on AMC Networks before viewing (binge?) Better Call Saul.
- NFLX +0.6% premarket.
Dec. 13, 2013, 12:55 PM
- New polling from Harris Interactive confirms that consumers streaming video content prefer the practice of binge viewing.
- The news isn't a shocker to Netflix (NFLX -0.2%) and Amazon (AMZN +1.3%) which have been pointing toward their own viewing data for quite a while.
- Redbox Instant (VZ, OUTR) could be the next streaming service to bring on TV shows for binge viewing, according to media buzz.
- The read-through for broadcasters (CBS, AMCX, FOXA, DIS, CMCSA) is mixed. Advertising rates could suffer if more viewers are willing to wait until series are available for streaming, but the payoffs for quality content are getting higher and higher. Just this week, CBS CEO Les Moonves tipped off that Amazon paid $700K per episode for streaming rights to Under the Dome - while AMC Networks knows full well that without Netflix hit show Breaking Bad would have broken down.
Dec. 13, 2013, 9:01 AM
- Sky Deutschland (FOXA) will enter the streaming video on demand market in Germany and Austria with a new service called Snap.
- Subscribers will have access to the vast library of content Sky has under its wraps.
- Snap will compete with Amazon's Lovefilm and beats Netflix (NFLX) to the sizable German market.
Dec. 12, 2013, 8:06 AM
- CBS (CBS) Les Moonves revealed earlier this week that Amazon paid $700K for the digital streaming rights for each individual episode of hit show Under the Dome.
- The comments from the thrilled exec came during his wide-ranging talk at the UBS Global Media and Communications Conference (webcast).
- That Amazon is aggressive in bidding for streaming content is no surprise, but the per episode rate for the mainstream broadcast show is higher than media analysts expected. Netflix (NFLX) is watching.
Dec. 11, 2013, 1:55 PM
- Citi's Mark May, who started coverage on Netflix (NFLX +0.9%) with a Neutral in July, has raised his PT to $390 from $355, albeit while maintaining his original rating.
- May declares Netflix "the largest and most innovative company in the Internet TV sector," and is lifting his broadband penetration and Netflix subscriber forecasts for the streaming giant's international markets.
- He now expects Netflix's international sub base to post a 39% CAGR from 2013-2016, up from a prior 31%, and is modeling 15% growth for later years. May also continues to expect a $1/month U.S. price hike in 2016.
- Shares are trading higher on a down day for the Nasdaq. They're up 296% YTD.
Dec. 10, 2013, 1:34 PM
- Though still generally below their mid-October highs, Internet momentum stocks are turning in what might be their best performance during a rally that has now lasted two weeks. While Twitter (previous) is the star of the show, Facebook (FB +3.5%), Yelp (YELP +1.8%), Groupon (GRPN +4.7%), Netflix (NFLX +2.1%), LinkedIn (LNKD +1.4%), and Pandora (P +3.4%) aren't getting left out.
- Several Chinese Internet names are also higher. In addition to Baidu, which is benefiting from a bullish Pac Crest note, Sina (SINA +6%), Ctrip (CTRP +6.1%), Qunar (QUNR +6.3%), and Youku (YOKU +3.9%) are staring at big gains.
- Morgan Stanley's Scott Devitt is out with another bullish note on Groupon. Devitt notes an MS survey of 358 SMBs found only 26% of merchants have run Groupon deals in the last 12 months, something he thinks suggests there's "a long run way of merchants" that can still be signed up.
- He also sees room for Groupon to improve its customer targeting - the company still isn't able to track which deals were shown to customers, or were clicked on, in prior e-mails - and expects its new site (allows deals to be browsed without an e-mail address being given) and a revamped e-mail layout to boost growth.
Dec. 9, 2013, 2:23 PM
- Research firm CIRP estimates Amazon (AMZN -0.8%) now has 16.7M Prime subs, up 72% from a year-ago level of 9.7M. The firm also reports 93% of Prime subs responding to a survey said they're happy with the service, and plan to renew.
- The estimate meshes with a recent report from Dan Rayburn, who was told by an Amazon insider the e-commerce giant ended Q3 with 15M+ Prime subs.
- Amazon's October decision to hike its minimum free shipping order size to $35 from $25 could be fueling a pickup in Prime subscriptions (free two-day shipping for $79/year, no order minimum). More recently, Amazon struck a deal with the USPS to enable Sunday delivery for Prime subs in major metro areas.
- If CIRP's estimate is reasonably accurate, it means close to 17M Amazon accounts now have access to Prime Instant Video (whether they're using it is a whole other question). Rival Netflix (NFLX -0.2%) ended Q3 with 31.1M U.S. streaming subs.
- Separately, Janney estimates Kiva Systems' robots could lower Amazon's per-order fulfillment costs by 20%-40% from a current $3.50-$3.75. That, in turn, spells estimated cost savings of $458M-$916M/year.
- Amazon mentioned in its Q3 report it deployed 1,382 Kiva robots during the quarter in three fulfillment centers.
Dec. 5, 2013, 1:29 PM
- A rumor that Carl Icahn has unloaded his remaining Netflix (NFLX -0.1%) stake (4.5% as of October) has led the streaming giant's shares to give up their morning gains.
- Icahn sold half his Netflix stake following the company's Q3 report, booking a 457% gain in the process. His son, Brett, and fellow Icahn Enterprises fund manager David Schechter declared at the time Netflix remained "significantly undervalued."
Dec. 4, 2013, 5:23 PM
- The economic argument is lopsided against the Pay-TV industry (CHTR, CVC, TWC, DISH, DTV) moving to an a la carte system, reasons Needham.
- The investment firm has some staggering estimates which indicate consumers could end up paying significantly more for an unbundled system or see a large number of networks close up shop to limit their choices.
- Working backwards, 180 channels at an average annual programming cost of $280M per year requires a bundled system to create the ad and subscriber revenue to support it.
- Though the math might work out fine and dandy, subscriber losses and a younger generation unfazed by cord-cutting indicates something might need to give.
- The wildcard in the mix: Online TV initiatives from Sony, Google, and Intel as well as the evolution of Netflix (NFLX) will also play a factor.
- Related stocks: CBS, DIS, AMCX, TWX, CMCSA, FOXA, SNI, MSG, DISCA
Dec. 4, 2013, 2:11 PM
- FCC chairman Tom Wheeler, in response to a question about whether ISPs should be allowed to charge service providers who are "data hogs" extra: "I think that we're seeing the market evolve in such a way that there will be variations in pricing, there will be variations in service ... Netflix (NFLX -0.9%) might say, 'I'll pay in order to make sure that my subscriber might receive the best possible transmission.'"
- At the same time, Wheeler, who has previously worked as the CEO for both the U.S. cable and wireless industries' top trade groups, says he supports net neutrality, and is opposed to allowing ISPs to block/limit services.
- Many Web giants, including Google and Facebook, are already paying U.S. ISPs to directly connect to their networks (and thus improve the speed/reliability of user connections). But Netflix has held off, reportedly out of fear of setting a precedent. The company has instead focused on partnering with ISPs (provided they're willing to do so) to build out its Open Connect CDN.
- Previous: Netflix discusses French launch
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Netflix Inc operates as an Internet television network providing TV shows & movies which include original series, documentaries & feature films. The Company has three segments namely Domestic streaming, International streaming & Domestic DVD.
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