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  • Netflix has reached out to gaming executives in recent weeks, sources told The Information.
  • The company could capitalise on a $167.9 billion (R2.3 trillion) global gaming market by expanding its video game content.
  • Netflix has expressed interest in making more gaming content in the past.
  • For more stories, go to www.BusinessInsider.co.za.

Netflix is looking to hire an executive that could expand its gaming content, sources familiar with the situation told The Information.

The streaming giant has approached multiple gaming executives in the past month, the sources told the publication. Netflix has not decided yet whether it will make its own gaming content or licence it from third-party publishers or some mixture of the two strategies, The Information reported.

A Netflix spokesperson told Insider the company is continually looking to expand its content offerings.

"Our members value the variety and quality of our content," the spokesperson said. "Members also enjoy engaging more directly with stories they love - through interactive shows like 'Bandersnatch' and 'You v. Wild,' or games based on 'Stranger Things,' 'La Casa de Papel' and 'To All the Boys.' So we're excited to do more with interactive entertainment."

Netflix already offers some gaming options, from interactive choose-your-own-adventure content like "Black Mirror: Bandersnatch" - which was wildly popular with fans - to games based on popular Netflix shows like "Stranger Things" and "To All the Boys."

But, the new report highlights that the company is looking to push further into the increasingly lucrative gaming market. Last year, the global gaming market hit $167.9 billion (R2.3 trillion), according to data from ResearchandMarkets.com.

A switch toward more gaming content could help stave off a recent slowdown in Netflix subscriber growth. Netflix saw a record boom in paid subscribers at the onset of the pandemic, but as the economy reopens and people look for entertainment options outside of their homes many users are cutting back on streaming services.

During the company's quarterly earnings report in April, Netflix's Chief Operating Officer, Greg Peters, said that the company was planning to get more into gaming.

"We're in the business of creating these amazing, deep universes and compelling characters and people come to love those universes and want to immerse themselves more deeply and get to know the characters better. We're trying to figure out all of the different ways that we can increase those points of connection and deepen that fandom and certainly games is a really interesting component of that," Peters said. "There's no doubt that games are going to be an important form of entertainment and important modality to deepen that fan experience so we're going to keep going."

It was not the first time that the company had hinted Netflix was looking to expand further into gaming content. In January, Peters said the company planned to make more choose-your-own-adventure games on the platform. In Netflix's January earnings report, it listed "Fortnite" - the world's most popular video game - as its biggest competitor.

"We compete with (and lose to) 'Fortnite' more than HBO," the company said.

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