Netflix CEO Reed Hastings, left, poses with Ted Sarandos, chief content officer of Netflix, during a news conference in Seoul, South Korea. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ahn Young-joon

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings, left, poses with Ted Sarandos, chief content officer of Netflix, during a news conference in Seoul, South Korea. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ahn Young-joon

Netflix chooses Toronto for new Canadian corporate headquarters

The company had been eyeing Toronto and Vancouver since the streamer shoots several productions in both markets

Netflix has chosen Toronto as the spot for its previously announced Canadian corporate office.

A publicist for the California-based streaming giant told The Canadian Press Tuesday the company will post a content executive job for the new office in June.

Netflix said in February it planned to open an office in this country but was still figuring out the location.

It had been eyeing Toronto and Vancouver, since the streamer shoots several productions in both markets.

Toronto is also where Netflix set up a production hub two years ago when it leased studio spaces along the city’s waterfront.

A representative from the company said Toronto made sense for a variety of reasons, including a plethora of talent, partners and international festivals in the city.

The representative said Netflix hasn’t chosen an exact location and hopes to set up an interim office this summer before establishing a permanent shop, in accordance with COVID-19 health and safety guidelines.

Netflix adds it expects 10 to 15 employees will be based in Toronto. The first hiring priority is the content executive, who will work directly with creators on ideas and pitches for films and series.

Job postings for other Toronto positions will be announced on the careers section of its website.

Toronto Mayor John Tory said Netflix spends over $200 million a year shooting shows in the city.

“In very difficult times, this is the kind of news that gives people in this city, and gives the city as a whole, hope,” Tory told reporters Tuesday.

Toronto’s film and television production industry “is second to none anywhere in the world,” Tory said, and he believes the new Netflix location will “become the second-biggest office next to the head office.”

“They’re on notice that we’re going to grow this office and it’s going to be a powerhouse office before too long and really cement our position yet again with this company, and others who will follow, as the place in Canada to make film and television productions,” Tory said.

Netflix co-CEO and chief content officer Ted Sarandos said in an interview in February the move was “a big first step” toward content creation in Canada.

He said adding an office in Canada would allow Netflix executives to be closer to Canadian creators, so they could build relationships and field pitches.

“As we grow our business and presence all across Canada, we’re excited that Toronto will be our first local office,” Sarandos added Tuesday in a statement.

“We’re looking forward to opening our doors and building on the great work we’ve started with our creative partners to bring more Canadian artists and stories to the world.”

Netflix has 21 offices around the world, in cities including Amsterdam and Rome.

The company recently celebrated its 10-year anniversary in Canada and has seven million Canadian subscribers.

Sarandos said since 2017, Netflix has spent $2.5 billion on production in Canada, on titles including the Toronto-shot “The Umbrella Academy” and the Vancouver-filmed series “Firefly Lane,” which is currently their No. 1 show in the world.

Other Netflix programming shot in Canada includes “Virgin River” in British Columbia, “The Adam Project” in Vancouver and “Locke & Key” in Toronto.

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