D: All Things Digital, The Wall Street Journal technology conference, is in full swing in Southern California.
Netflix (NFLX) Chief Executive Reed Hastings led off the proceedings this morning talking about international expansion. The Internet movie outfit is going to launch in Toronto first, a “bold” move, going to Canada, he jested. Then, Netflix will open it’s doors in an undisclosed foreign market shortly thereafter.
The upshot: international expansion could hurt profits. “We tell investors that the better it goes, the more money we are going to lose because we are going to invest” more in expansion, Hastings says. He says it takes one to three years for Netflix to establish itself in a new country, which is relatively fast. Hastings, who is a Microsoft (MSFT) board member, would not comment about hedge fund manager David Einhorn’s call for Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer’s ouster.
He was wiling to discuss his own open letter to short sellers to cover their negative bets, even calling short-selling “healthy” for markets.
“I’m not trying to have a battle with the shorts,” (but) if you have a friend on the short side and you think he’s losing money, and you think he’s wrong, then you want to tell him.”
The conference, now in its ninth year, got off to a rip roaring start last night when News Corp. “acting CEO” Jane Lynch, the star of the Fox Television hit Glee, recommended comic strips be added to the WSJ and other humorous mandates involving Sara Palin and talk show shock host, Glenn Beck.
Google (GOOG) Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt was the opening night keynote. The former CEO, who serves as an advisor to President Obama, says he has no intention to take a cabinet post or agency job, which had been rumored. But he will be active in the coming campaign just as he was during the President’s first election.
Note: For further ongoing coverage of D, see also former Tech Trader editor Eric Savitz’s blog at Forbes.com.
Article courtesy of Tech Trader Daily