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Netflix Co-Founder On Corporate Culture: Customer Always Comes First

Jayson Derrick

Software executive Marc Randolph co-founded Netflix Inc (NASDAQ: NFLX) with Reed Hastings in 1997, and the top priority from day one was to focus on the customer, Randolph said during a recent "Bloomberg Technology" interview.

What Happened

Netflix's core focus since the day it was created was to help consumers watch content they love, Randolph told Bloomberg.

Coupled with a management style of empowering workers to make decisions on their own, the streaming video giant is better-equipped today to respond to any threats and take advantage of every opportunity, Randolph said.

This philosophy remained unchanged as Netflix evolved from seven employees to 7,000, he said.

"Even though Netflix to some is the big behemoth, to Netflix they are still a startup," he said. "They still are willing to do whatever it takes."

Why It's Important

As soon as Netflix or any other company prioritizes shareholder needs over customers, it will "get into trouble" in terms of ethics and business, Randolph said.

One of the most important considerations for customers is price, he said, adding that the growth of multiple platforms at $5 or less per month gives consumers better choice and access.

"There is no reason you can't have more than one." 

What's Next

Over time, the streaming video space could grow large enough for multiple companies to thrive, Randolph said. Perhaps more important, this will prove to be a "fantastic" opportunity for consumers.

Netflix shares were down 0.45% at $290.26 at the time of publication Thursday. 

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