adplus-dvertising
Connect with us

Business

Netflix’s Hastings gives up CEO title; Peters named co-chief

Published

 on

Netflix Inc. co-founder Reed Hastings is stepping aside as chief executive officer of the company he’s led for more than two decades, leaving the position to his two longtime associates, Ted Sarandos and Greg Peters.

Sarandos, who was already co-CEO, is the company’s public face in Hollywood while Peters, previously chief operating officer, has overseen its product development and push into advertising. Hastings, 62, will serve as executive chairman of the company.

“Our board has been discussing succession planning for many years (even founders need to evolve!),” Hastings said in a blog post. “The board and I believe it’s the right time to complete my succession.”

Netflix ended the year on a high note. The company added 7.66 million subscribers in the final quarter of 2022, easily topping the 4.5 million average estimate of Wall Street analysts. Revenue, at US$7.85 billion, was in line with estimates, while earnings, at 12 cents per share, fell well below the same period a year ago. The company forecast that its profit margin and free cash flow would improve in the year ahead.

300x250x1

Sarandos and Peters must guide Netflix through a turbulent time in the media industry. The company just reported its slowest year of subscriber growth since 2011, the year it split its streaming business from its DVD-by-mail service. Shares in the company lost half of their value last year, while its growing frugality alienated some of the creative people who once hailed Netflix as a champion of the arts.

The programming slate was one of Netflix’s strongest, however. The company released its third most popular TV show ever with Wednesday, its most popular foreign-language movie with Troll and its fourth most popular movie ever, Glass Onion. Its titles accounted for more than 80 per cent of the 10 most-watched streaming titles every week during the quarter, according to Nielsen.

Hastings has been signaling he would step aside for a few years. He elevated Sarandos to co-CEO in 2020 and named Peters COO at the same time. He already delegated almost all Hollywood decisions to Sarandos, and has gradually pulled back from the day-to-day affairs of the business.

COMPANY ORIGINS

Hastings founded Netflix in 1997 alongside Marc Randolph. Randolph served as Netflix’s CEO for its first few years, but Randolph proved to be better at coming up with the idea for a company than leading a growing enterprise. Hastings supplanted his co-founder as CEO and never looked back.

He took the company public and guided Netflix through its triumphant tussle with the video rental chain Blockbuster. Hastings introduced a streaming service in 2007 and four years later separated the streaming service from the DVD-by-mail service. That maneuver proved to be his single biggest flub at Netflix since it amounted to a 60 per cent price increase for its customers. He also gave the streaming service the unfortunate name of Qwikster. The company lost 800,000 customers and its stock fell more than 70 per cent.

But Hastings’s vision of the future was sound. Customers wanted to stream video on-demand over the internet. That same year, Sarandos decided to spend US$100 million to make two seasons of a show called House of Cards. A pop culture encyclopedia, Sarandos joined Netflix in 2000 from a regional video rental chain and had been angling to fund original programming for more than a decade.

House of Cards proved to be a huge hit and forever changed the trajectory of the company. Netflix started spending billions of dollars a year on original programming and Sarandos, long Hastings’s deputy, was now billed as his partner. Soon enough, its biggest suppliers began to see Netflix as more foe than friend and Sarandos grew into one of the most influential executives in Hollywood history.

As part of the latest reorganization, Bela Bajaria will assume Sarandos’s old title as chief content officer. She had served as the global head of TV.

The promotion of Peters to co-CEO ensures that someone with a technology background will remain in charge of a company born in Silicon Valley. Peters has overseen the company’s push into advertising and its efforts to eliminate password sharing.

COMPETITION HEATS UP

Increased competition from Walt Disney Co., HBO, Apple Inc. and others has hindered Netflix’s growth in the past couple of years. These companies have pulled many of their popular titles off of Netflix to use for their own services and the number of people canceling Netflix has increased. But Netflix believes a cheaper, advertising-supported tier for cost-conscious consumers and a crackdown on people sharing passwords will boost growth. It says more than 100 million people are using the service without paying for it.

“2022 was a tough year, with a bumpy start but a brighter finish,” the company said in its letter to shareholders Thursday.

Netflix introduced a new advertising-supported tier in November after years of positioning its service as an alternative to advertising-supported TV. The performance of the ad tier has been mixed, according to third-party data providers. It was Netflix’s least popular plan in its first month, according to Antenna, and advertisers say the service has delivered fewer viewers than the company projected. But the new tier led to surge in new sign-ups on its first day, according to Ampere Analysis, and increased its share of Netflix sign-ups in December.

Netflix said it is pleased with its progress and that the advertising tier has attracted new, cost-sensitive customers. Most of the people picking the advertising tier are new customers, not people downgrading from a higher-priced plan. The company had almost doubled the price of its most popular plan over the last decade.

728x90x4

Source link

Continue Reading

Business

FTX founder Bankman-Fried objects to tighter bail, says prosecutors 'sandbagged' him – Reuters

Published

 on


NEW YORK, Jan 28 (Reuters) – Lawyers for Sam Bankman-Fried on Saturday urged a U.S. judge not to ban the indicted FTX cryptocurrency executive from communicating with former colleagues as part of his bail, saying prosecutors “sandbagged” the process to put their client in the “worst possible light.”

The lawyers were responding to a Friday night request by federal prosecutors that Bankman-Fried not be allowed to talk with most employees of FTX or his Alameda Research hedge fund without lawyers present, or use the encrypted messaging apps Signal or Slack and potentially delete messages automatically.

Bankman-Fried, 30, has been free on $250 million bond since pleading not guilty to charges of fraud in the looting of billions of dollars from the now-bankrupt FTX.

Prosecutors said their request was in response to Bankman-Fried’s recent effort to contact a potential witness against him, the general counsel of an FTX affiliate, and was needed to prevent witness tampering and other obstruction of justice.

But in a letter to U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan in Manhattan, Bankman-Fried’s lawyers said prosecutors sprung the “overbroad” bail conditions without revealing that both sides had been discussing bail over the last week.

“Rather than wait for any response from the defense, the government sandbagged the process, filing this letter at 6:00 p.m. on Friday evening,” Bankman-Fried’s lawyers wrote. “The government apparently believes that a one-sided presentation – spun to put our client in the worst possible light – is the best way to get the outcome it seeks.”

Bankman-Fried’s lawyers also said their client’s efforts to contact the general counsel and John Ray, installed as FTX’s chief executive during the bankruptcy, were attempts to offer “assistance” and not to interfere.

A spokesman for U.S. Attorney Damian Williams in Manhattan declined to comment.

Bankman-Fried’s lawyers proposed that their client have access to some colleagues, including his therapist, but not be allowed to talk with Caroline Ellison and Zixiao “Gary” Wang, who have pleaded guilty and are cooperating with prosecutors.

They said a Signal ban isn’t necessary because Bankman-Fried is not using the auto-delete feature, and concern he might is “unfounded.”

The lawyers also asked to remove a bail condition preventing Bankman-Fried from accessing FTX, Alameda or cryptocurrency assets, saying there was “no evidence” he was responsible for earlier alleged unauthorized transactions.

In an order on Saturday, Kaplan gave prosecutors until Monday to address Bankman-Fried’s concerns.

“The court expects all counsel to abstain from pejorative characterizations of the actions and motives of their adversaries,” the judge added.

Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York; Editing by Andrea Ricci

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

Adblock test (Why?)

728x90x4

Source link

Continue Reading

Business

Gold declines in light of the report that revealed inflation continues to decline – Kitco NEWS

Published

 on


As of 6:00 PM EST, the February contract of gold futures has fallen for the second time in the last seven trading days. Currently, gold futures are fixed at $1927.60, a decline of $2.40 or 0.12%. Gold traded to a high of $1935.40, and a low of $1916.50.

The key takeaway from today’s PCE inflation index report was that the core PCA index declined in December by 0.3%. The preferred inflation index used by the Federal Reserve was at 4.7% year-over-year in November and declined to 4.4% year-over-year last month.

300x250x1

Both reports will influence decisions made by the Fed at next week’s FOMC meeting.

They will be critical components used by the Federal Reserve next week and will most likely strengthen the conviction of hawkish Fed officials to maintain their extremely aggressive monetary policy. Currently, the Federal Reserve’s forward guidance is composed of additional rate hikes and maintaining elevated rates for a longer time.

The most likely outcome is that the Fed will raise the rate by ¼% at the next two meetings. The Federal Reserve has stated they continue to work to reach its inflation target of 2%. A vast majority of market participants continue to believe that the Fed will backpedal on its commitment to keep rates elevated through 2023.

I will be speaking at the VRIC 2023 (Sunday, January 29-30) at the Vancouver Convention Center. Both Kitco News and I wish to welcome you if you’re available.

For those who would like more information simply use this link.

Wishing you as always good trading,

Adblock test (Why?)

728x90x4

Source link

Continue Reading

Business

Afraid to check a bag? Canada's missing baggage woes explained – CBC News

Published

 on


Deborah Cleary was exasperated.

When she landed in Montreal on Dec. 19, following a trip to Italy, she discovered her suitcase was missing. More than a month later, Air Canada still hadn’t found her bag. 

“I’ve spent so much time thinking about it, worrying about it, checking online, calling Air Canada,” said Cleary from her home in Plattsburg, N.Y., on Tuesday. “I’m just sort of desperate to get my bag back.”

300x250x1

The post-pandemic return to travel has been turbulent, plagued by mass flight disruptions and missing baggage piling up at airports. That has led to calls for airlines to improve their baggage delivery systems.

“It’s broken, so I think they need to fix that,” said Cleary, who visited the Montreal airport two weeks ago to search for her bag amidst a sea of unclaimed luggage. She didn’t find it.

However, following a CBC News inquiry to Air Canada, Cleary learned on Friday that her suitcase is being shipped to her home. 

“I’m very, very happy,” she said. “I had almost resigned myself, I was never going to see it again.”

Deborah Cleary and Dan Albert of Plattsburgh, NY pose for photo during their vacation to Italy.
Deborah Cleary and Dan Albert of Plattsburgh, N.Y., are still waiting to be reunited with their missing baggage that disappeared on their return flight from Milan to Montreal. (submitted by Deborah Cleary)

Canada’s first round of missing baggage chaos erupted in the summer, largely sparked by staffing shortages as airports and airlines scrambled to ramp up operations. 

There were high hopes the holiday travel season would go more smoothly — until severe winter storms hit much of Canada, causing hundreds of delayed and cancelled flights, plus a backlog of lost luggage.

“In the airline industry, a delay of greater than 15 minutes generally results in missed connections,” said former Air Canada executive Duncan Dee. “Delays equal missing bags.”

Former Air Canada executive, Duncan Dee.
Former Air Canada executive Duncan Dee says airports need more infastrucutre funding to keep operations running smoothly during bad weather. (CBC)

Dee said airlines need to do a better job keeping track of luggage, and the federal government also needs to invest more in airports.

In late December, cold weather caused a baggage belt to freeze at Toronto’s international airport; a fierce snow storm caused widespread flight delays and cancellations at Vancouver’s international airport.

“There’s obviously a need for better infrastructure, better resources for airports … to make them more resilient to these weather events,” said Dee.

What about the airlines?

When asked this week about recent travel chaos, Transport Minister Omar Alghabra said airports will get the tools they need, but did not elaborate. 

On the baggage issue, he pointed the finger at airlines. 

“I find it extremely frustrating when I hear stories of people not having their luggage for days on end,” he said during an event in Hamilton. “Airlines should be doing more.”

His comments follow several recent media reports about air passengers’ struggles to find their missing luggage

They include the saga of Nakita Rees and Tom Wilson of Cambridge, Ont., who battled with Air Canada for more than four months to retrieve Wilson’s missing suitcase. 

WATCH |Ontario couple told their luggage was lost — but it wasn’t: 

Air Canada said this couple’s luggage was lost. AirTags showed otherwise

5 days ago

Duration 2:18

A couple says Air Canada donated their luggage to charity just a month after it got lost en route to Toronto’s Pearson Airport. They tracked it to a storage locker.

The bag vanished during their flight home from Greece in September. Because the couple had put an air tag tracker inside the suitcase, they were able to track its journey to a storage facility in nearby Etobicoke, Ont. 

Even though Rees shared with Air Canada the whereabouts of the bag, the airline deemed it lost. 

“The most frustrating thing about it was we had no way of getting it, even though we knew the location and we told the airline so many times,” said Rees. “Because the air tags are newer, I just don’t think airlines know how to even use that information.”

The couple finally got the suitcase back this week — after their story was picked up by the media.

Airlines respond

Other passengers have also complained about similar experiences when tracking their lost luggage with air tags. 

Former Air Canada executive Dee said airlines typically track luggage by scanning their baggage tags and that their systems currently can’t accommodate air tracking technology.

“That’s something where airline processes have not caught up to the technology that’s available,” he said. “No airline in the world has the ability right now to accept information from travellers.”

Alghabra suggested airlines need to change with the times. 

“We hear about how Amazon is able to identify where their items [are at] every moment,” he said. “It’s frustrating that airlines still have not modernized their luggage handling system.”

Air Canada told CBC News it’s constantly exploring new technologies. The airline added that its baggage delivery rate has returned to normal, following the stormy holiday weather. 

Air Canada said that in Rees’ case, the baggage tag had fallen off the suitcase. The airline didn’t say how it eventually located the couple’s bag, but did indicate that they get to keep the $2,300 in compensation they received for lost luggage. 

WestJet said it has launched a strategic review to fine-tune its baggage systems. “[We] are committed to working together with our third-party service partners … to ensure we improve in this area,” said spokesperson Madison Kruger in an email. 

Baggage compensation

Travellers can claim up to approximately $2,350 for luggage that is lost or delayed on an international flight. For delayed baggage on domestic flights, the airlines design their own rules. 

Alghabra’s office told CBC News this week the government is exploring ways to strengthen rights for air passengers, including for delayed and lost baggage.

As for passenger Cleary, she had applied for compensation for a lost bag, but said getting it back is a better outcome. 

“I would much prefer to have my bag back than any money from Air Canada.”

Adblock test (Why?)

728x90x4

Source link

Continue Reading

Trending