Netflix Co-CEOs Made 230 Times Average Company Employee's Salary In 2022, Despite Stock's Fall

Zinger Key Points
  • Netflix shares were down over 50% in 2022.
  • The company's co-CEOs saw a nice payday despite the shares falling.

Two of the biggest names in the streaming sector saw a jump in their salary. Here’s a look at how much Netflix Inc's NFLX top bosses made in 2022.

What Happened: Netflix continues to be one of the largest streaming companies in the world, ending the recent first quarter with 232.5 million global subscribers.

For their role in helping grow the streaming company, co-CEOs Reed Hastings and Ted Sarandos saw huge paydays in 2022, which came as shares of Netflix fell during the calendar year.

Hastings took home $51.07 million, including $49.4 million from stock option awards, according to a report from Variety. The pay for Hastings was up 25% from 2021. Hastings announced in January 2023 that he would step down from his co-CEO role.

Sarandos took home $50.3 million in 2022, including a base annual salary of $20 million, $28.5 million in stock options, and $1.79 million in other compensation.

According to the report, Hastings will see his 2023 salary at a base of $500,000 along with $2.5 million in stock options for his role as executive chairman. If he didn’t step down as co-CEO, Hastings would have been eligible for around $34.7 million in salary and stock option awards.

New co-CEO Greg Peters, who was previously the chief product officer and COO, took home $28.1 million in 2022. Peters will see his compensation rise to a potential $34.65 million in 2023 with an annual salary of $3 million, $17.325 million in options and $14.325 million in performance-based targets.

In 2023, Sarandos will receive up to $40 million, broken down as an annual salary of $3 million alongside $20 million in stock options and $17 million in performance-based targets.

Netflix said in a filing that the executive compensation program for 2023 changed due to feedback from shareholders. The changes include a salary cap of $3 million, a minimum of 50% allocation to stock options and performance-based programs.

The average total compensation for the median Netflix employee in 2022 was $218,400 according to the filing. Netflix breaks down the comparison in salaries of its co-CEOs compared to the average median worker.

Sarandos made 230 times the average Netflix worker in 2022. Hastings took home 234 times the average Netflix worker last year.

“We had a bumpy start to 2022 but a brighter finish,” Netflix said in the filing.

The company said it added nine million paid members during the fiscal year.

Related Link: Reed Hastings's Life After Netflix: Saving Utah's Powder Mountain One Ski Run At A Time

Why It’s Important: Netflix shares were down 51% in 2022,

Along with losses in its share price, Netflix was among the technology giants that cut jobs in 2022.

A previous story from Benzinga showed that Hastings and Sarandos were set to earn $34 million and $40 million respectively for 2022, but they both eclipsed the total.

Employee compensation compared to how much executives make has been a hot topic in recent months in the face of job cuts, high inflation and companies needing to scale back.

Many have been critical of companies that pay their executives huge salaries and paid out bonuses despite a falling share price and during a period of job cuts.

Hastings is a co-founder of Netflix alongside Marc Randolph. The duo famously turned down offers to sell the company to Blockbuster and Amazon for $50 million and $15 million, respectively. This means that in 2022 alone, Hastings made more than he would have if he sold the company to either rival years prior.

Not a bad decision by Hastings to hold onto the company.

Read Next: Quantity Over Quality, Ben Affleck Questions Assembly Line Style Of Streaming Giant Netflix 

Photo: Shutterstock

Market News and Data brought to you by Benzinga APIs
Posted In: NewsManagementExecutive CompensationGreg Petersmedia stocksReed Hastingsstreaming platformsstreaming stocksTed Sarandos
Benzinga simplifies the market for smarter investing

Trade confidently with insights and alerts from analyst ratings, free reports and breaking news that affects the stocks you care about.

Join Now: Free!