On his earnings call today, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings joked that his archrival, HBO chief Richard Plepler, used “Netflix bitch” as his Netflix password.
The battle between Netflix and HBO is becoming increasingly intense. Yesterday, Business Insider reported that streaming video services like Netflix are catching up to premium channels like HBO and Showtime in terms of the proportion of U.S. households that pay for such services, based on a study out of market research firm NPD.
Today, Netflix’s stock soared after the company beat analyst expectations for both revenues and earnings.
Riding high on those numbers — and the 2.3 million U.S. subscribers the company added in the most recent quarter — Netflix CEO Reed Hastings came out swinging at competitors during today’s chat with Wall Street analysts.
LA Times media reporter Joe Flint caught this during the call:
Netflix CEO Reed Hastings just joked that HBO CEO Richard Plepler’s Netflix password is “Netflix Bitch.”
— Joe Flint (@JBFlint) January 22, 2014
While HBO and its premium channel brethren came out against the NPD study suggesting that their numbers were falling, the fact of the matter is that HBO expects a gain of about 1.9 million subscribers in 2013, less than Netflix’s customer growth in a single quarter. It’s clear which side has the momentum in this race.
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