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Saudi entrepreneurs need to stop thinking and start doing, former Netflix CEO says

RIYADH: Netflix founder and former CEO Marc Randolph has urged young Saudi entrepreneurs to figure out quick and cheap ways of showing off their business ideas in an interview with Arab News.

Speaking on the sidelines of the Global Entrepreneurship Congress, Randolph told Arab News that entrepreneurship does not have to happen in Silicon Valley as it can happen anywhere in the world, even at the GEC.

The businessman was at event in Riyadh to support and meet young Saudi entrepreneurs and startup businesses.

Sending a message to young Saudi entrepreneurs and startups, Randolph said that “the trick is you have to start.” 

Entrepreneurs stop thinking and started doing, which is what sets them apart from the rest of the dreamers, he said.

“The cleverness these days is not just coming up with a good idea, but being able to figure out a quick, cheap, and easy way to try something, to build something, to make something, to test something, and find out tomorrow if your ideas are good or not,” he added.

In 1998, Randolph founded his sixth startup, Netflix, in the US after being an entrepreneur for most of his life. Originally, Netflix was a video mailing company that mailed DVD rentals to subscribers until 2007. Now, it is a streaming and production company.

From being a software company to becoming a content company, Netflix evolved from Randolph’s original vision leading him to leave the company as he was not interested in working for a large corporation.

Instead, he wanted to focus on helping small business owners and work with early stage companies. “So, I left Netflix on very good terms,” he said.

Speaking about the GEC, Randolph said the event is an excellent opportunity to talk to young entrepreneurs and startup companies, even if it is for half an hour.

“I really believe that I have to make the effort to try and help people who are actually out doing that,” he said about young Saudis planning to start businesses.


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