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Netflix Is Planning a Bigger Move Into Video Games

By Danny Vena - May 21, 2021 at 1:48PM

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There's mounting evidence that the streaming giant may go all-in on gaming.

Netflix (NFLX 1.48%) appears to be confirming rumors that have swirled about the streaming giant's further foray into video games. The company is working to hire an executive to take the lead on its expansion into gaming, according to a report that first appeared in The Information. 

The company has been quietly reaching out to veteran executives in the gaming industry about joining its ranks. One possible strategy would involve putting together a bundle of games, similar to a tactic employed by Apple with its Apple Arcade online gaming subscription.

Hands holding a video game controller.

Image source: Getty Images.

Netflix is still in the early stages of formulating its plans, so nothing is etched in stone. The company has yet to decide if it will develop games in-house, license them from other publishers, or some combination of the two.

"Our members value the variety and quality of our content," a Netflix spokesperson told Tech Radar. "It's why we've continually expanded our offerings. ... So we're excited to do more with interactive entertainment." 

During its first-quarter 2021 earnings call, Netflix CFO Spence Neumann said the company has "dabbled" in the video game space, with tie-ins to its popular programming like Black Mirror: Bandersnatch and Stranger Things. When asked about future possibilities in the space, chief product officer and chief operating officer Greg Peters hinted that the company might be planning a bigger move in the space. 

"We're in the business of creating these amazing deep universes and compelling characters and ... people come to love those universes and they want to immerse themselves more deeply and get to know the characters better and their backstories," Peters said. "We're trying to figure out ... all these different ways that we can increase those points of connection, we can deepen that fandom ... and games are a really interesting component of that." 

Given Netflix's vast and growing library of content, this could eventually be a lucrative sideline.

Danny Vena owns shares of Apple and Netflix. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Apple and Netflix. The Motley Fool recommends the following options: long March 2023 $120 calls on Apple and short March 2023 $130 calls on Apple. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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