Netflix brings in ex-Facebook exec to lead shift into video games


Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX) has brought in a former Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) executive as part of a major shift of its business into the video games sector.

The streaming giant has reportedly appointed Mike Verdu, who aside from his stint at the social media network also worked for video game publisher Electronic Arts Inc (NASDAQ:EA), as its vice president of game development amid reports it is aiming to offer video games as part of its subscription package within the next year.

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The move into video gaming follows previous experimentations in interactive content by Netflix, however, a fully-fledged gaming offering could allow the company to differentiate itself from competitors such as Walt Disney Co’s (NYSE:DIS) Disney+, Apple Inc’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) Apple TV+ and Amazon Inc’s (NASDAQ:AMZN) Prime service.

It could also present a challenge to some of the video game industry’s biggest providers of online multiplayer games such as Fortnite owner Epic Games and World of Warcraft owner Activision Blizzard Inc (NASDAQ:ATVI).

The additional content could also be introduced without an increase in subscription costs, presenting a potentially attractive price point for customers who are still on the fence about Netflix’s content library.

Shares in Netflix were up 1.7% at US$557.30 in pre-market trading in New York on Thursday.


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