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NFLX 331.410.0%Apr 16 8:10 PM EDTNews
Investors Snap Up Shares of Netflix in Initial Nasdaq Trading

NEW YORK -- It's amazing what dropping the "dot-com" from your name can do for an initial public offering.

Netflix Inc. , an online entertainment company that, when known as had to once cancel its IPO, opened higher initial trading Thursday.

Shares of the Los Gatos, Calif. , company opened on the Nasdaq Stock Market at $16.19, 7.9% above the $15 price set on its IPO of 5.5 million shares. Near midday, the shares traded even higher at $16.95.

The offering, led by Merrill Lynch & Co . Inc. (MER), priced at the high end of price talk of $13 to $15 a share, an unusually aggressive pricing in what has been a tough market for unprofitable technology IPO hopefuls.

"To price at the top of the range, we were very fortunate," said Reed Hastings, the company's chief executive, in an interview.

Netflix is the country's best-known online entertainment subscription site, allowing users to rent three DVDs a month for a monthly subscription charge of $ 19.95.

One of Netflix's biggest advantages is its subscription model, said George Nichols, an analyst with in Chicago .

"These ongoing billing relationships, rather than one-time purchases, have annuity-like characteristics that provide a steady revenue stream," he said.

It also has some growth trends in its favor, Mr. Nichols said. "As far as consumer technologies go, DVD is still relatively young, and many new DVD players are being sold as the mass market fully adopts it."

The business isn't yet profitable, though the company has been narrowing its losses. In the first quarter, Netflix logged $30.5 million in revenue, for a $ 4.5 million net loss. In the comparable period in 2001, it lost $20.6 million on $17.1 million in revenue.

For Netflix, the offering marked a success after failing to come to market two years ago. Netflix originally filed to raise $86.3 million through Deutsche Bank in April 2000 , but the offering was withdrawn three months later as the IPO market began its long, dry period, one that still exists.

The offering was revived in March of this year, but with new terms. The company filed to sell as much as $115 million through Merrill Lynch, though, in the end, the offering raised $82.5 million.

Netflix's Mr. Hastings said he believes that the proceeds now will "give pause to our competitors" and allow the company to more aggressively market its services free to potential customers. Nine of 10 people who receive Netflix free initially end up subscribing, he said.

The challenge to the business is twofold, Mr. Hastings said. Blockbuster Inc. (BBI) recently said it would get into the mail-rental business, putting it into direct competition with Netflix.

The other, Mr. Hastings said, was getting people to feel comfortable renting DVDs online and receiving them through the mail, a process that "just sounds odd to people until they try it," he said.

Netflix featured one of the odder risks to its business in the offering documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission: the U.S. Postal Service. If the Postal Service does indeed raise rates this summer, it "will adversely affect our gross profit if we elect not to raise our subscription rates to offset the decrease."

Customer satisfaction might also take a hit if the Post Office stops Saturday delivery and customers can't get their DVDs in a timely fashion, Netflix said.
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991Amazon Plans Free Streaming Media Service Website Said to Drop Strategy of Only Gottfried103/27/2014 05:02 PM came across my trading platform Monday, brief, as you saw it...apparentlSavant103/25/2014 11:27 PM
989Do you have a link? He said that months ago. He sold half of the NFLX position iSr K-03/25/2014 10:28 PM
988Some say he represents much that is wrong with our capitalistic stock market. Tamson Fischer-03/25/2014 12:16 PM
987This Icahn guy is one shady character. I saw three articles yesterday in which FUBHO-03/25/2014 08:26 AM
986 Icahn: Have Sold About Half of Position In Netflix -CNBC Savant-03/25/2014 01:02 AM
985Comcast is the most shit company on the planet. You would have to be completelyFUBHO103/10/2014 04:54 PM
984Comcast buys rights to sell 'House of Cards' episodes  Ron-03/10/2014 04:48 PM
983Orange CEO: Netflix Plans to Start Service in France in Autumn By Inti Landauro Brian Sullivan-03/07/2014 02:24 PM
982HBO already is licensing all four of those to Amazon. $1.99 or $2.99 per show, Sr K-03/05/2014 10:20 PM
981<<This post originally stated that Netflix owned the syndication rights toChrisGillette103/03/2014 11:39 PM
980Scroll down to the very bottom of this article:  *This post oGlenn Petersen-03/03/2014 08:33 PM
979Netflix pushes the "House of Cards" crap every time we turn on the RokJurgis Bekepuris-03/03/2014 01:48 PM
978From the article: Netflix as the only place to see "House of Cards"...ChrisGillette-03/03/2014 01:54 AM
977A Believer In Netflix... It's Not Too Late  makes theGottfried103/02/2014 03:10 PM
976If that gets picked up by the newswires then it might not be good for the stock J.F. Sebastian-03/01/2014 03:20 PM
975The Netflix program for giving gift subscriptions is 'down for maintenance&#Ron-03/01/2014 03:06 PM
974Netflix Drone To Home [satire]  Gottfried-02/26/2014 11:10 AM
973wsj MEDIA & MARKETING Netflix Agrees to Pay Comcast to End Traffic Jam DeaSr K302/23/2014 12:29 PM
972Two stories affecting NFLX today. Interesting. First there was this: Feud over nRon102/19/2014 12:21 PM
971Storm Clouds on the Last Mile Horizon February 11th, 2014 by Rob Powell Last FUBHO302/11/2014 10:25 AM
970Verizon denies using net neutrality victory to sabotage Netflix, Amazon EngineerRon202/08/2014 05:52 PM MEDIA & MARKETING Netflix Gears Up to Expand in Europe Rival MediSr K-01/28/2014 05:05 PM
968 Netflix biggest rival is Amazon Prime #NFLX #AMZN  Ron101/26/2014 02:18 PM
967StockCharts almost doubled it in one day, to 540: Prelim. Bullish Price Obj. (RSr K-01/23/2014 06:09 PM
966Another Netflix Inc. NFLX +1.53% quarterly report, another big stock move. ShaDr_of_Microcaps101/23/2014 01:03 AM
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