Netflix wisely expands to Cuba

Martha Pietruszewski

If you’re one of those people who don’t actually know what President Barack Obama has done in his seven years in office, I’ll give you a hint: Cuba.

Obama recently lifted an embargo between Cuba and the United States that was in place since the 1960s. Among the first corporations to take advantage of these relaxed restrictions is Netflix.

Netflix is making a bold move by trying to offer its services in Cuba, and many other U.S. companies will try imitating this brilliant strategy within the next year.

By expanding into Cuba, Netflix is helping the country’s citizens experience new forms of entertainment that Americans have enjoyed for years. This is a great example of putting away past differences and helping Cuba get up to speed with the rest of the world.

However, foraying into a world that has largely been stuck in the 1960s will prove difficult. Part of the reason Obama is relaxing trade restrictions is so that Cuba can improve its telecommunication infrastructure. In a country with very limited Internet connection and little cellphone service, Netflix will have to be patient while Cuba gets up to speed — literally.

In the meantime, Netflix can continue to expand into Europe. Late in 2014, it announced that it would roll out into some European countries, including France.

Expanding into France and other European countries will serve as a good primer for expanding into Cuba, as Netflix will have time to iron out any kinks it sees with European customers.

When the time comes for Cuban citizens to log on, the process will be seamless.

Netflix is making the right moves by expanding into European countries and, eventually, Cuba.

After all, Cuba is the new black.