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NETFLIX CFO DEFENDS COMPANY’S CHANGES

September 22, 2011 by · 1 Comment 

David Wells

The chief financial officer of Netflix has defended the company’s recent changes — splitting the company into two separate units, one for streaming, the other for DVDs by mail (titled Qwikster). Speaking at an investors conference in New York David Wells said (as reported by MediaPost), “There have been too many examples in history of companies that don’t move fast enough to position their brands. … We have a long history of having been very transparent with our consumers. … We’ll take our licks as we get them.” Wells maintained that Netflix’s DVD business had been faltering. “We have already seen declines in DVDs,” he said. “It was our feeling that this business is mature.” Despite the recent public outcry over the company’s changes, Wells said that it has not affected the company’s revenue and that subscriber defections have halted. “We are well-positioned,” he said. “We are still the market leader.” As for the possibility of reverting to its previous pricing plan to appease unhappy customers, Wells said that would be “a little bit like kicking the can down the road.” (He did not explain the analogy.) Netflix stock appeared to stabilize today (Thursday). It closed unchanged from Wednesday at $128.50.