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Netflix to launch in Latin America

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Movie streaming and mail-order DVD rental service Netflix announced today that its operations will expand to Mexico, Central America, South America and the Caribbean. This includes a total of 43 additional countries, according to a statement posted to the official Netflix blog. A list of all the countries included in the deal has not yet been published.

Netflix Vice President of Marketing Jessie Becker says that new members in the region “will be able to access Netflix.com in Spanish, Portuguese or English, depending on their preference.” They will also be able to access the service “for one low monthly subscription price,” on a “range” of devices, including Macs and PCs, and mobile devices.

The company has not yet announced when users in the Latin American world will be able to begin streaming movies and television shows. But those who are interested in finding out can visit the Netflix website and leave their email address. Netflix will send out a notification message when it officially launches

News of the expansion has sent Netflix stock price on NASDAQ skyrocketing 5 percent to more than $281 at the time of this writing, an all-time high since Netflix went public in May 2002. Last year, Netflix expanded its services to Canada. The move to the Latin America represents the largest overseas expansion in a master plan to make itself available in countries around the globe.

In addition to elevating his company to worldwide dominance, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings recently joined Facebook‘s board of directors. The social network is preparing to launch an initial public offering sometime in 2012. Hastings, who founded Pure Software before co-founding Netflix, has already been through two IPOs. The 50-year-old executive also serves on Microsoft‘s board.

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