Netflix and Frill

Photo Credit: Netflix

In an ironic twist of fate, notorious FAANG stock Netflix has announced a chain of brick-and-mortar locations slated for 2025. The media empire galvanized itself at the top of the streaming entertainment market through the 2010s, but amid growing competition, the company is taking on a contrarian philosophy in embracing the very medium that they originally laid to rest. This comes after news that Netflix made several rounds of layoffs in Q2 2022, with a $70 Mn charge for severance costs as the company adjusted its operating model for slower top-line growth.

Netflix vice president Josh Simon confirmed the company’s plans with Bloomberg when he told them that these stores will feature “a mix of retail, dining, and live experiences.” The experience will include merchandise specific to their licensed releases as well as theaters that will display the content itself.

Bloomberg reports indicate that Netflix House hopes to emulate the successful consumer products strategies used by other media companies to generate profit. The company’s management is approaching the concept of building a network of physical locations not only to create a unique experience for viewers, but also to promote their titles. So rather than a pure cash generator, the locations will also serve as a media platform in a physical medium. “We’ve seen how much fans love to immerse themselves in the world of our movies and TV shows, and we’ve been thinking a lot about how we take that to the next level,” Simon told the outlet.

The success was originally tested with the Stranger Things live attraction that hit select states. Called Stranger Things: The Drive-Into Experience, it featured iconic locations from the show, characters from the show, bar and food, and photo ops. This all occurred during the pandemic so the allure and novelty of leaving the house in the first place could’ve been a factor in any success the attraction received. While the concept of brick-and-mortar for a company that built its foundation on a lack of physicality sounds asinine, the thing will include alcohol and food so I’m sure it will do just fine.