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Disney unveils DTC, int’l team

The Walt Disney Company (TWDC)’s direct-to-consumer (DTC) and international arm has named its key executives ready for the closure of Disney’s deal for 21st Century Fox assets.

Rebecca Campbell

Disney’s fledgling DTC and international division comprises its international media businesses and various streaming services, including Disney+ and the company’s soon-to-be majority stake in Hulu.

The consolidated Disney and 21st Century Fox international business units will be overseen by three key leaders in EMEA, Latin America and Asia Pacific once the US$73.1bn deal is closed.

Rebecca Campbell, currently president of TWDC EMEA, will maintain oversight of the region and adds responsibility for Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS).

Joining Disney’s EMEA leadership team, reporting to Campbell, is Jan Koeppen, currently president of Fox Networks Group (FNG) Europe and Africa, as president, television and DTC.

Marina Jigalova-Ozkan is also joining and will continue in her current role as DTC and international MD for Russia and CIS at TWDC CIS.

Diego Lerner, currently president of TWDC Latin America, will maintain oversight of the region.

Joining the Lat Am team, reporting to Lerner, is Carlos Martinez, president of FNG for Latin America, who will serve as executive VP and general manager, media networks, north and Brazil at TWDC Lat Am.

Uday Shankar, president of 21st Century Fox, Asia and chairman and CEO of Star India, will become chairman of Star and Disney India and president of TWDC Asia Pacific.

Reporting to Shankar as part of the Asia Pacific team will be current DTC and international execs Luke Kang, executive VP and MD for Greater China, Japan and Korea; Kylie Watson-Wheeler, MD for Australia and New Zealand; and Chafic Najia, senior VP and MD for the Middle East.

Additionally, Janice Marinelli will be responsible for the firm’s DTC and international integrated global content sales organisation as president, global content sales and distribution.

Marinelli will lead and have oversight of the company’s programming sales across Disney’s various brands, as well as the distribution of branded DTC apps and services to broadcasters, digital services and other third-party distributors around the world.

Disney’s DTC and international arm plans to announce additional executives joining the three regional leadership teams as well as the global sales organisation in the coming weeks.

Campbell, Lerner, Marinelli and Shankar will all report to Kevin Mayer, who was made chairman of Disney’s DTC and international segment in March.

“The planned restructuring of our business units outside of the US will result in a stronger, more agile organisation, one that is better able to pivot and capitalise on the many opportunities present in today’s fast-changing and increasingly complex global marketplace,” said Mayer.

“Once the acquisition is complete, all three regions will be led by exceptional, highly experienced executives who will combine the ‘best of the best’ talent from both organisations. This new structure and the outstanding leadership team we’ve put in place are clear demonstrations of our strong commitment to integrating operations and thoughtfully executing our strategic priorities around the globe.”

The following DTC and international business leaders will continue in their previously announced roles, reporting to Mayer: Rita Ferro, president of Disney advertising sales; Aaron LaBerge, chief technology officer; Michael Paull, president of Disney streaming services; and Ricky Strauss, president of content and marketing at Disney+.

The 21st Century Fox transaction is subject to various international regulatory clearances, a number of which have been obtained, while others remain pending.

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