Netflix, Inc. is an American subscription video on-demand over-the-top streaming service and production company based in Los Gatos, California. Founded in 1997 by Reed Hastings and Marc Randolph in Scotts Valley, California, it offers a film and television series library through distribution deals as well as its own productions, known as Netflix Originals.
As of September 2022, Netflix had 222 million subscribers worldwide, including 73.3 million in the United States and Canada; 73.0 million in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, 39.6 million in Latin America and 34.8 million in the Asia-Pacific region. It is available worldwide aside from Mainland China, Syria, North Korea, and Russia. Netflix has played a prominent role in independent film distribution, and it is a member of the Motion Picture Association (MPA).
Netflix can be accessed via web browsers or via application software installed on smart TVs, set-top boxes connected to televisions, tablet computers, smartphones, digital media players, Blu-ray players, video game consoles and virtual reality headsets on the list of Netflix-compatible devices. It is available in 4K resolution. In the United States, the company provided Digital Video Disc (DVD) and Blu-ray rentals delivered individually via the United States Postal Service from regional warehouses.
Netflix initially both sold and rented DVDs by mail, but the sales were eliminated within a year to focus on the DVD rental business. In 2007, Netflix introduced streaming media and video on demand. The company expanded to Canada in 2010, followed by Latin America and the Caribbean. Netflix entered the film and television production industry in 2013, debuting its first series House of Cards. In January 2016, it expanded to an additional 130 countries and then operated in 190 countries.
The company is ranked 115th on the Fortune 500 and 219th on the Forbes Global 2000. It is the second largest entertainment/media company by market capitalization as of February 2022. In 2021, Netflix was ranked as the eighth-most trusted brand globally by Morning Consult. During the 2010s, Netflix was the top-performing stock in the S&P 500 stock market index, with a total return of 3,693%.
Netflix is headquartered in Los Gatos, California, in Santa Clara County, with the two CEOs, Hastings and Ted Sarandos, split between Los Gatos and Los Angeles, respectively. It also operates international offices in Asia, Europe and Latin America including in Canada, France, Brazil, Netherlands, India, Italy, Japan, Poland, South Korea and the United Kingdom. The company has production hubs in Los Angeles, Albuquerque, London, Madrid, Vancouver and Toronto. Compared to other distributors, Netflix pays more for TV shows up front, but keeps more “upside” (i.e. future revenue opportunities from possible syndication, merchandising, etc.) on big hits.