On Thursday, in a statement Netflix Inc said, it has hired a former Facebook executive to lead its video games unit. The development comes at a time when the company is ramping up its efforts to grow beyond its traditional streaming business.
Netflix has hired Mike Verdu, a former vice president at Facebook, as VP of its game development; he will report to Chief Operating Officer Greg Peters.
Verdu had founded his own defense software company at the tender age 20 and had sold it before shifting his team into video games in 1990. Since then he has worked at Atari, Electronic Arts, Kabam and other game developers overseeing games including “Lord of the Rings.”
Previously Netflix has experimented with interactive programming with movies such as “Black Mirror: Bandersnatch” and “You vs. Wild” that enabled viewers to decide the characters’ moves. Recently it has also created games based on shows “Stranger Things” and “La casa de Papel (Money Heist)” and launched an online store to sell merchandise related to its TV shows.