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Netflix Ups Holmes To Chief Biz Dev Officer

Netflix promoted Bill Holmes, previously vice president of business development, to the role of chief business development officer.

Holmes has helped the video-rental company strike deals with top consumer-electronics manufacturers, including Apple, LG, Microsoft, Nintendo, Samsung and Sony. He joined Netflix in 2008 after heading DivX's business development efforts.

"Bill has helped make Netflix the killer app for the world's leading electronics companies," Netflix CEO Reed Hastings said in a statement. "In doing so, Netflix is now available on millions of devices in over 25 million households in more than 50 countries."

In announcing earnings for the first quarter of 2012, Netflix confirmed that it is pursuing partnerships with pay-TV operators, Internet service providers, major retailers and others similar to the deal the company struck with Apple to pay for Netflix through their iTunes account.

In some cases "it may make sense for us to let [partners] bill on our behalf," Hastings and Netflix CFO David Wells wrote in a letter to shareholders. However, they added, "We'll take it slowly; we must make sure we've got the right customer support and financial integration, while maintaining a direct relationship with our members, to ensure the member experience is actually simpler."

In the first three months of 2012, Netflix added 1.7 million streaming-only video subscribers in the U.S. to reach 23.4 million total streaming members domestically, but it also lost 1.1 million DVD customers.