Telecom giant Econet Global founder and Zimbabwean billionaire Strive Masiyiwa are now one of the board of directors of Netflix. He is the first African director of Netflix and the move holds significance as the company is looking to build a new market across Africa. The development comes close on the heels of Susan Rice leaving her board post. Rice left the post as she is preparing to join the Joe Biden administration. Netflix co-founder and co-CEO Reed Hastings announced the information during a press conference. “We are delighted to have Strive Masiyiwa as our board member,” Hastings said. “He has valuable insights and experience in building business across Africa and even beyond. His vision and entrepreneurship will help us serve more members all around the world.”
Netflix co-CEO Ted Sarandos too welcomed Strive to say that his joining comes at an appropriate time as the company is looking to expand more across Africa and other parts of the world. Masiyiwa is the founder and executive chairman of telecommunications company Econet Global. The company is a major provider of mobile payments along with offering phone and broadband services. It operates in Africa, Latin America, Europe, and Asia. Masiyiwa recently donated USD 10 million in cash and this helped him to get on the list of Bloomberg’s 50 most important people in the business.
He is the third international media executive who has joined the board of directors of the streaming giant in recent years. Netflix already has two board of directors from its fastest-growing regions in Europe. With more than 190 million subscribers worldwide, Netflix is now looking for new regions to grow. Asia is the fastest-growing for the company as it added most new subscribers in the last quarter. Africa is relatively a small market for Netflix as the region has more than a billion people. According to Digital TV Research, the company has just a couple of million customers for now.