A look at Netflix since much-hated price hike

Associated Press Modified: November 5, 2012 at 1:45 pm •  Published: November 5, 2012
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Feb. 21: As part of an effort to offer more exclusive material, Netflix locks up the right to show "The Artist" and other movies from The Weinstein Co. before the films are released to leading pay-TV channels such as Showtime and HBO. On the same day the multiyear deal is announced, Comcast Corp. announces plans to undercut Netflix with a less expensive version of a service that will stream old TV series and movies to devices with high-speed Internet connections.

April 23: Netflix says it suffered its first quarterly loss in seven years as it dealt with rising licensing fees and the bill for an international expansion. The first-quarter setback, however, was far smaller than analysts expected. In another encouraging sign, the company's subscriber growth accelerated during the first three months of the year, further evidence that the company is recovering from the price-hike backlash.

July 3: Netflix announces that subscribers watched more than 1 billion hours of online video in June, an indication that streaming video is getting more popular.

July 12: One-year anniversary of price-hike announcement. Subscriber growth has returned, but even after a recent rally, Netflix stock remains more than 70 percent below its peak price of nearly $305 about a year ago.

July 24: Netflix reports a 91 percent reduction in second-quarter earnings. It added 1.1 million subscribers worldwide to its streaming service — in line with management predictions, but below what analysts had hoped for. Netflix also cautions that it may be tougher to get more people to sign up during the current quarter as the Summer Olympics fills the entertainment needs of many households for two weeks of the 12-week period.

Aug. 15: Netflix announces that its international expansion will continue with a rollout in four Nordic countries — Norway, Denmark, Sweden and Finland. Service became available in mid-October.

Oct. 23: Netflix slashes its prediction for how many U.S. video streaming subscribers it would add this year after subpar third-quarter results. The company says it added 1.2 million net streaming subscribers in the U.S. in the three months through September, which was on the low end of its forecast.

Oct. 31: Activist investor Carl Icahn discloses he has used some of his $14 billion fortune to accumulate a 10 percent stake in Netflix.

Monday: Netflix moves to protect itself against hostile takeovers by adopting a shareholder rights plan, also known as a poison pill. Such a plan is designed to make it difficult or even impossible for someone to take over the company without an agreement from the board. Netflix says the provision is triggered if a person or group acquires 10 percent of Netflix, or 20 percent in the case of institutional investors, in a deal not approved by the board.

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