Warner Bros. Discovery announced the leadership team put in place to support Priya Dogra in her role as President and Managing Director, EMEA (excluding Poland). At the same time, the company unveiled its new core APAC team structure under regional bosses Clement Schwebig and James Gibbons, along with further senior executive departures.
● EMEA LEADERSHIP TEAM
“My focus has been to build a senior team that harnesses and balances the experience, perspective and talent from across the Discovery and WarnerMedia businesses. Each leader will be responsible for continuing the necessary transitions into new means of distribution and new forms of growth, as well as integrating our two organizations into one team, with one clear strategy and a common, respectful culture,” Priya Dogra said.
• Alessandro Araimo becomes General Manager, Italy, Spain and Portugal. He was previously EVP and General Manager for Discovery in Italy.
• Pierre Branco becomes General Manager, France, Benelux and Africa. He was previously Country Manager for WarnerMedia in France, Benelux, Middle East and Africa and Head of Affiliates and Ad Sales for EMEA.
• Jamie Cooke becomes General Manager, CEE, Baltics, Middle East, Mediterranean and Turkey. He was previously Country Manager for Discovery across CEE and Middle East & Africa.
• Hannes Heyelmann becomes General Manager, Germany, Austria and Switzerland. He was previously EVP Programming for WarnerMedia across EMEA.
• Antonio Ruiz becomes General Manager, UK and Ireland. He was previously General Manager for Discovery in Spain, France and Portugal.
• Christina Sulebakk becomes General Manager, Nordics. She was previously General Manager of HBO Max across Europe.
• Vanessa Brookman continues as SVP Kids and Family, EMEA and takes on responsibility for Adult Swim across EMEA with a dual reporting line to Michael Ouweleen, who leads Cartoon Network, Adult Swim and Boomerang.
• Antony Root continues his responsibilities for original production for HBO Max across EMEA as well as original production for the WarnerMedia general entertainment channels in Germany, France and Spain.
• Ragnhild Thorbech continues her responsibilities for programming and acquisitions for HBO Max EMEA.
• Myriam Lopez-Otazu continues her responsibilities for guiding investment, planning and prioritization for the Discovery linear channels and discovery+ working closely with the territory GMs and coordinating with the US programming team.
• Qaisar Rafique becomes lead for Commercial Strategy expanding the role he played at Discovery to the broader portfolio.
• Leah Hooper is regional lead for Streaming for EMEA, sitting on JB Perrette’s leadership team and being an integral part of Priya Dogra’s senior team.
Meanwhile, the following executives have decided to step down: Sylvia Rothblum, Country Manager, Germany, Austria and Switzerland for WarnerMedia; Susanne Aigner, GSVP & General Manager, Germany, Switzerland, Austria & Benelux for Discovery; Thomas Ciampa, Country Manager for Italy, Spain and Portugal for WarnerMedia; Lydia Fairfax, SVP Commercial Partnerships, EMEA for Discovery; and David Fisher, VP Advance Advertising for Discovery.
● APAC LEADERSHIP TEAM
“These appointments reflect the strength of leadership from both legacy companies, bringing an impressive track record and deep knowledge of our diversified Warner Bros. Discovery portfolio,” James Gibbons remarked.
• Jeeyoung Lee will serve as General Manager for Korea, having helped to build a strong production unit, that will be a fundamental pillar of the company’s future strategy in Korea.
• Arjun Nohwar becomes General Manager for India, having previously been responsible for the launch of HBO MAX in India.
• Shonali Bedi will lead affiliate distribution and digital partnerships for Southeast Asia, while also continuing to head up business development and insights
• Cindy Ma will lead affiliate distribution and advertising sales for Taiwan.
• In Southeast Asia, Taiwan and Hong Kong, Magdalene Ew will continue to head entertainment, while Christopher Ho will head kids and Lynn Ng will take on factual & lifestyle, while also continuing in her current role for content ops for the wider region.
Meanwhile, spanning across the entire INSEAK region:
• Kurt Rieder will continue to lead theatrical distribution as well as being part of the international theatrical operations headed by Andrew Cripps.
• Jae Chang will continue to lead TV distribution and home entertainment.
• Vikram Sharma will lead consumer products licensing, while he continues to oversee advertising sales for Southeast Asia.
• Jason Monteiro will head an integrated marketing team across INSEAK in addition to his coordination role for streaming services. He will manage marketing and creatives services across all lines of business, while working closely with the D2C marketing team.
The Japan and Australia & New Zealand (ANZ) team under regional president and MD James Gibbons has also been confirmed:
• Masami Takahashi has been appointed Country Manager, Head of Studios, Japan, based in Tokyo. He will continue to oversee all theatrical activity, local production, content licensing, games and consumer products.
• Glen Kyne has been appointed Head of Networks, Japan and Australia & New Zealand. Based in Auckland, he will oversee all networks activity for all three markets across pay TV, free-to-air and BVOD.
• Michael Brooks continues as Managing Director of Warner Bros. International Television Production Australia, and has additionally been appointed as Head of Studios, Australia & New Zealand, where he will be responsible for content licensing, and optimizing studio-related activities across both markets, for which he will report to Gibbons. Brooks is based in Sydney.
• Robi Stanton has been named Head of Franchise Development & Affiliate Relations, Australia & New Zealand, based in Sydney, and will manage affiliate partnerships and the optimization of WBD franchises.
• Andrew Brommel continues in the role of VP Consumer Products, Australia & New Zealand, based in Sydney.
• David Macdonald has been named VP Networks, Japan, based in Tokyo. He will continue to manage network activity, reporting to Glen Kyne.