Netflix was the best performing stock of the decade, with an impressive return of over 4,000% over the last 10 years.
The company was founded in 1997 by Marc Randolph and Reed Hastings, and it launched the world’s first online DVD rental store in 1998.
Netflix launched its monthly subscription concept in September 1999, charging a flat fee for unlimited rentals without due dates, late fees, shipping and handling fees, or per-title rental fees.
In early 2002, Netflix experienced strong growth in its subscription business, which promoted the company to initiate an initial public offering (IPO) on 29 May 2002.
The company sold 5.5 million shares of common stock at a price of $15 per share.
Video on demand launched
Netflix introduced a video-on-demand service in February 2007 thanks to higher data speeds and lower bandwidth costs in the United States.
Although it could initially only offer around 1,000 titles on its streaming platform, this increased to 12,000 movies and shows by June 2009.
Netflix’s streaming service was a hit, and in 2012, the company had over 27 million streaming customers in the United States.
The company also started to see strong growth internationally, and in October 2018, Netflix boasted 137 million subscribers globally.
Netflix is now the dominant online subscription video service in the world with 158.3 million subscribers.
Strong share price growth
Thanks to its tremendous growth and excellent product offering, Netflix became the best-performing stock of the decade.
The company’s share price grew from just over $7 in 2010 to its current level of $338 – a return of over 4,000%.
This means if you invested R10,000 into Netflix in 2010, your investment would now be worth R455,000.
Netflix comfortably outperformed other prominent tech stocks, including Amazon, Apple, Microsoft, and Google.
The graphs below show how Netflix’s share price performed compared with other tech giants.