Netflix Chief Executive Reed Hastings’ compensation doubled to $5.5 million

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Netflix Chief Executive Reed Hastings will need a few more zeros on his paycheck if he wants to be considered a real Hollywood mogul.

Hastings’ 2010 compensation doubled to $5.5 million in 2010, according to the Los Gatos, Calif., company’s proxy statement filed late Wednesday. Last year was a banner year for the company. Its stock price increased 219% to $175.70 and Netflix added 8 million subscribers, bringing its total to 20 million. Revenue jumped 29% to $2.16 billion and net income was up 39% to $161 million.

Nearly $5 million of Hastings’ compensation package came from stock options, up from $1.75 million in 2009. His salary was actually cut in half to $519,231 from $1 million the previous year.

Although $5.5 million is nothing to sneeze at, it also pales in comparison to other chief executives at big media companies.


For example, Time Warner Chief Executive Jeff Bewkes, an outspoken critic of Netflix’s business model, had a compensation package worth $26.3 million in 2010. Viacom Chief Executive Philippe Dauman had a 2010 package worth $84.5 million. The compensation package of CBS chief Leslie Moonves was valued at nearly $58 million. Discovery Chief Executive David Zaslav’s deal was worth almost $43 million.

The biggest raise among Netflix’s senior executives went to the man in charge of acquiring content for its booming online streaming service: Ted Sarandos. The company’s chief content officer, who works out of its Beverly Hills office, got a 118% raise, to $2.4 million. His salary of $900,000 was higher than that of any other senior executive, though his stock options were less than those of Hastings, Chief Marketing Officer Leslie Kilgore and former Chief Financial Officer Barry McCarthy.

-- Ben Fritz