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Reed Hastings | The Inspiring Story of Netflix’s Founder



Reed Hastings is an American businessman born on 8 October 1960. He is the chairman, co-founder, and Chief Executive Officer of the famous streaming platform Netflix. The company has more than 221.6 million subscribers worldwide. It offers many movies and television series through distribution deals and its own production house, Netflix Originals.

Early Life

Reed Hastings was born on 8 October 1960 in Boston, Massachusetts, to Wilmont Reed Hastings, an attorney for the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare in the Nixon Administration, and Joan Amory Loomis, a Boston debutante from a Social Register family.

Reed went to Buckingham Browne & Nicholas School in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Mathematics from Bowdoin College. Reed Hastings was a part of Marine Corps officer training through the Platoon Leader Class. He spent many of his college summers in the marines. 

From 1983 to 1985, he taught math in high school. After that, he got rejected from MIT and went to Stanford University to complete his master’s degree in Computer Science. Reed Hastings graduated in 1988.

Finding Netflix

Netflix originated in 1997 when Reed Hastings and a former Pure Software Company employee Marc Randolph, co-founder of the company, came up with the unique idea. They started by offering a flat rate movie rental-by-mail to all the customers in the US. 

Reed and Marc started combining two emerging technologies; DVDs because they were easier to send by mail than the VHS cassettes and websites to order the movie from instead of a proper catalog.

Netflix has its headquarters in Los Gatos, California. Reed Hastings had the idea of Netflix after he left Pure Software Company. He said he had no idea if people would use the service when he founded the company.

Netflix Culture

Netflix Workplace

As we can all see the growth of Netflix, the company is known for its creative and exceptional management practices. Reed Hastings has been exploring a culture known as “Freedom and Responsibility.” The company offers mediocre employees severely large packages to keep working to enhance the company’s innovative environment. Netflix has eliminated sick and vacation time for the employees. Instead, the company lets the employees manage their time off individually.

Educational and Political Activism

Charter School

Reed Hastings is active in educational philanthropy and politics. He strongly supports Charter Schools, which are free from rules and regulations that other public schools have to follow in exchange for some accountability for producing specific results.

In 2006, Reed Hastings donated $1 million to Beacon Educational Network to open Charter School in Santa Cruz County, his home. 


In August 2007, Reed Hastings donated $1 million to a committee formed to support California State Superintendent of Schools Jack O’Connell’s candidacy for Governor of California in 2010.

He donated $251,493 to a coalition supporting Californian Propositions to 1A to 1F called Budget Reform Now. In the 2016 US Presidential Election, Reed supported Hillary Clinton. 

Personal Life

Reed Hastings and his wife

Reed Hastings is married to Patricia Ann Quillin, and they have two children. They live in Santa Cruz, California. In 2020, Hastings and his wife donated $30 million to GAVI to support COVAX COVID-19 vaccines initiative.

In March 2022, Hastings donated $1 million to Razom, a Ukrainian nonprofit organization that procures emergency supplies and medical equipment such as disposable resuscitators to treat the wounded.

Also Read: Jeff Bezos | Success Story of the Founder of Amazon

Why did Reed Hastings create Netflix?

In 1997 Hastings conceived the idea of a subscription-based movie-rental service, after he incurred a large late fee when he failed to return a store-rented videocassette. DVDs were new to the market, but Hastings felt that they would travel well through the mail.

What is the net worth of Reed Hastings?

Reed Hastings has a net worth of $1 billion. He has earned his fortune as the co-founder, Chairman and CEO of Netflix.

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