18 OCT 2022

BBC Studios appoints executive roles for International Formats and Production

Announced at Mipcom Cannes, Fiona Wassenberg joins as Head of BBC Studios Benelux Productions, as Isabel Durán is appointed Format Sales Director for Iberia and Latin America.

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Fiona Wassenberg and Isabel Durán

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At Mipcom Cannes 2022, BBC Studios announced the appointments of Fiona Wassenberg as Head of BBC Studios Benelux Production and Isabel Durán as Format Sales Director for Iberia and Latin America. According to the company, the appointments are made as BBC Studios continues to grow its business in these markets, and seeks opportunities to develop new IP for international audiences.

Based in Amsterdam, Fiona Wassenberg is now responsible for BBC Studios’ formats and production business across Benelux. Wassenberg will work closely with BBC Studios’ unscripted format partners in the market, Fremantle, as well as commissioners and producers in the region to unlock future commercial and creative growth.

Prior to joining BBC Studios, Wassenberg spent nearly 16 years at the Dutch public broadcaster Omroep Max, most recently as Commissioning Editor and Content Acquisitions, with editorial responsibility for Omroep Max’s content across NPO1, NPO2 and ZAPP, including local versions of “Four In a Bed,” “Four Rooms,” and “The Great Bake Off.”

“For the past ten years I have had the opportunity to work closely with BBC Studios and their partner Fremantle on the local version of ‘The Great Bake Off,’ ‘Junior Bake Off’ and ‘Extra Slice.’ I’m thrilled to be joining BBC Studios, working on these and many other of the strong formats and brands from their catalogue. I am proud to use the knowledge I’ve gained, while working with numerous amazing production companies and public broadcaster colleagues, in my new position,”  Fiona Wassenberg said.

Since 2018, the production partnership between BBC Studios and Fremantle has brought local versions of hit formats such as “The Great Bake Off,” “Weakest Link,” “The 1% Club,” and “This is MY House” to the Netherlands, and “Dancing with the Stars” to Belgium. Local versions of “Maestro,” “How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria?,” and “World’s Most Dangerous Roads,” also air in the Netherlands.

Meanwhile, as Format Sales Director for Iberia and Latin America, Isabel Durán is now responsible for securing both unscripted and scripted format sales across Spain, Portugal and Spanish-speaking Latin America. The role builds on recent commissions of “The 1% Club” with Atresmedia in Spain, “The Great Bake Off” in Argentina, Colombia, Mexico and Uruguay, “Dancing with the Stars” in Costa Rica, and scripted comedy “Uncle” across the US Hispanic market and Latin America.

Durán has more than 20 years of experience in development, production and as Director of Content. As executive producer she has worked on series such as “Married at First Sight” for Antena 3 and “El líder de la Manada with César Millán” for Cuatro. As Director of Content for Eyeworks (now Warner), she was responsible for two of the most successful primetime TV shows for La Sexta and Cuatro networks: “Mujeres Ricas” and “Perdidos en la tribu.” As Director of Development for Atresmedia Studios and Buendia Estudios, she developed game show format “Before you hit the Floor,” which was the 2020 MIP Formats International Pitch Winner.

“I am pleased to join BBC Studios and use my knowledge and experience to bring fantastic new stories and entertainment to audiences across Iberia and Latin America. I am looking forward to building new partnerships and meeting customers during Mipcom,”  Isabel Durán declared.

Commenting on the new appointments, André Renaud, SVP Global Format Sales at BBC Studios, said: “I’m delighted to have both Fiona and Isabel joining BBC Studios as we continue to grow our expertise in key markets around the world. Both Fiona and Isabel bring a wealth of experience in their regions, and I am confident that this will build to strong partnerships across Europe and Latin America in the months to come. These appointments represent our commitment and ambition to work closely to find stories and shows that can be adapted worldwide, building on BBC Studios’ 100 years of expertise that we continue to support and share around the world.”