- Netflix plans to establish a new production hub in New York City and will create 127 high-paying executive jobs focused on marketing, content and production as part of the effort, according to a statement by Gov. Andrew Cuomo. The company currently staffs 32 employees in New York.
- The hiring goal, which Netflix aims to reach by 2024, will herald up to $100 million in new investments in New York City, Cuomo said. Netflix has already filmed several marquee originals, including "Orange Is the New Black," "Russian Doll" and the upcoming Martin Scorsese-directed film "The Irishman," in New York.
- An office expansion at 888 Broadway in the Flatiron District will cover roughly 100,000 square feet. Netflix has also leased 161,000 square feet of space in Brooklyn to accommodate six new soundstages. The city is granting Netflix up to $4 million in performance-based tax credits over the next decade to ensure the company meets its hiring targets and also keeps its current staff positions for the next five years.
Netflix is significantly growing its New York footprint over the next several years as the streaming wars heat up with rivals like Disney and Apple, which both plan to launch their own services in the near future. The focus on hiring around marketing, content and production shows the Los Gatos, California-based company continuing to lean into a strategy more strongly centered around producing and promoting originals, as it will soon lose some high profile properties from other media brands, namely Disney's film and TV catalog.
Netflix has recently expanded its presence in bigger hubs for the entertainment industry, like Los Angeles. Last year, the company purchased up to three dozen billboards around the city to get its original shows and films in front of more showbiz executives and talent. The famous Egyptian Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard is also reportedly an acquisition target, and would mark Netflix's first brick-and-mortar theater as it seeks to build credibility around prestigious award shows like the Oscars.
However, New York offers distinct advantages compared to LA, namely in being at the center of the advertising, media and financial sectors in North America. When Amazon was plotting to build a second headquarters in the city before notoriously dropping those plans earlier this year, analysts speculated that the move could both help and hurt traditional Madison Avenue agencies, since the online retailer is more frequently working directly with brands but is also quickly innovating with its own advertising business.
Netflix could offer New York marketers and agencies similar opportunities as analysts forecast it will spend nearly $2.9 billion on marketing in 2019. Netflix is also experimenting more in fields like interactive and gamified content that marketers view as promising for potentially deeper product integrations, since the subscription-based platform does not run advertisements.
The streamer is certainly going through some adjustments to its marketing strategy, as longtime CMO Kelly Bennet plans to step down this year. In a letter to shareholders last week discussing Q1 earnings, Netflix announced it was putting content chief Ted Sarandos in charge of its marketing operations and that the executive would spearhead the search for a new CMO to replace Bennet.