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Sesame Workshop hires first Euro head

Sesame Workshop, the US group behind kids’ classic Sesame Street, has hired a former Viacom and Disney exec as its first general manager for Europe.

Stefan Kastenmüller

Stefan Kastenmüller has been named GM at the group’s new office in Germany, its first physical presence in Europe.

Kastenmüller will be responsible for developing and implementing a long-term strategic vision for the Workshop in the region.

He is tasked with expanding the firm’s brand and business, with an immediate focus on securing and managing partnerships across core areas including consumer products, content production and distribution, English learning and formal education and themed entertainment.

He will also lead the team in identifying early childhood issues relevant to key European markets and addressing them with the help of local sponsors by developing community outreach programes featuring Sesame Street’s characters.

Prior to joining, Kastenmüller was senior VP and group GM for EMEA at WWE, where he oversaw all lines of business including content media distribution, OTT network, live events, consumer products, sponsorship and digital.

He has also held executive positions at Viacom’s MTV Europe, Ringier, UFA Film & Fernseh (Fremantle/RTL Group) and Disney TV Channel Networks’ Jetix Europe.

Ed Wells, who first revealed the European plans at C21’s Content London event last December, said: “Stefan brings with him more than 25 years of experience building brands and commercial business for some of the world’s most well-known IPs across traditional and digital media.

“As Sesame Workshop evolves its international investment strategy with a greater focus on Europe, his expertise and passion for children’s content will be invaluable in helping future generations of kids across the region grow up smarter, stronger and kinder.”

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