Netflix Chief Financial Officer David Wells has stepped down after eight years in the position. Wells has been CFO throughout much of the company’s dramatic growth into the giant it now is.
David Wells Resigns
David Wells, the Netflix Chief Financial Officer for the last eight years, has decided to step down from the job. He held the CFO position throughout the time during which the streaming service rose to become the giant it is today. Under Wells, Netflix has come to spend more on TV series and movies than the largest Hollywood movie studios.
Wells, 47, has agreed to stay aboard to help in the process of selecting a successor to replace him. He also intends to help his replacement in making the transition. This, according to a statement Netflix made on Monday. According to Wells, he is leaving to pursue a philanthropic focus.
Breaking the Mold
Wells brought Netflix and its finances through some of the deepest skepticism regarding its strategy. He was a part of the company as it managed to spend a great deal of money on programming without causing itself to collapse. It has spent billions on shows and movies. Its 2018 budget is for $8 billion (USD) for purchasing programming from rival companies in addition to financing its own productions.
This rise in spending made it possible for Netflix to skyrocket its subscriber numbers beyond 130 million around the world. This played a significant role in turning the traditional TV programming industry on its head. This service gave viewers the opportunity to watch the shows and movies they want, when and where they want.
Coming and Going
Whoever replaces Wells will need to assist CEO Reed Hastings and Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos in the management of spending. At the same time, they face a market in which there are a growing number of rivals such as Amazon.com and Walt Disney Co.
“David has been a valuable partner to Netflix and to me,” wrote Hastings in a statement. “He skilfully managed our finances during a phase of dramatic growth that has allowed us to create and bring amazing entertainment to our members all over the world, while also delivering outstanding returns to our investors.”