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Banijay’s Dutch label SimpelZodiak bolsters creative leadership

Banijay’s Dutch production label SimpelZodiak has strengthened its creative team with several senior hires.

Annabelle Aaftink

Annabelle Aaftink has been appointed as head of development, taking overall responsibility of the creative team.

Aaftink joins from rival firm Tuvalu Media, where she spent seven years working with streamers and commercial broadcasters on a slate of content including Kamp van Koningsbrugge, most recently as programming coordinator.

She will work closely with Stijn Ouwehand, who following success with titles such as Hunted into the Wild, a locally created spin-off of global hit Hunted, has been promoted to creative director.

Also joining SimpelZodiak is designer and developer Henk Vernout, casting and development executive Jamy Lee Roy and senior creative producer Vincent Sewalt.

The company is behind local versions of Survivor (known locally as Expedition Robinson), MasterChef, Temptation Island and Hunted, as well aw Dutch crime series Kees van der Spek.

SimpelZodiak MD Justine Huffmeijer said: “I’m extremely proud that Annabelle, Henk and Jamy Lee have chosen to join SimpelZodiak. They all have an incredible drive and passion for creativity – and this is at the heart of our company. The same goes for Stijn, who is one of the best creatives in the business with a raft of high-profile shows behind his name.

“I’m very much looking forward to working with this dream team on new successful series for the international market, as well as of course our customers and viewers in the Netherlands.”


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