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Netflix CFO: MVPDs Must Decide if SVOD is Friend or Foe

25 Sep, 2013 By: Erik Gruenwedel

CFO David Wells

Netflix executive says streaming pioneer remains open to bundling service with pay-TV

Netflix CFO David Wells Sept. 25 reiterated comments by CEO Reed Hastings about two years ago that the subscription video-on-demand pioneer is interested in being bundled with third-party cable, satellite and telecommunication video packages.

Speaking at the Goldman Sachs Communacopia confab in New York, Wells said Netflix believes it can attain 60 to 90 million household penetration in the United States — a milestone the CFO admitted might require assistance from multichannel video program distributors.

He said Virgin Media’s recent decision to include Netflix, as an app in TiVo set-top boxes to subscribers in the United Kingdom was a precedent that underscored what the streaming service could offer a MVPD.

“It’s up to the MVPD to decide how much of a competitor they view us, or compliment, and how much they might be willing to do something with us,” Wells said.

The CFO said there remain reservations among MVPDs regarding the roles of linear and over-the-top video distribution.

“They’re trying to understand the monetization of one channel versus another. And it becomes blurry when those things overlap each other, and [MVPDs] have less line of sight in terms of how much value is being delivered through the channels,” Wells said.

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