In one of the first major moves since the go-ahead was given for the Disney-Fox merger, chairman of Star and Disney India and president of The Walt Disney Company in APAC, Uday Shankar, has announced an APAC restructure to the business.
In the announcement, he gave details of a new DTCI APAC leadership team, which uses a lot of the previous talent but gives more localised control to businesses, in order to adapt to local needs.
According to reports, he said in a letter: “While our region is experiencing tremendous change, the common thread that binds it together is the exciting opportunity it presents to build on the great businesses that we have today and create transformational businesses of tomorrow. My endeavour is to build an organisation that enables us to take full advantage of this unique opportunity and capitalise on the potential of the great leadership talent that we have in the region.”
“To achieve this, we are making some changes to the current market structure. This will allow us to serve the strategic agenda in each market and enable our exceptional leaders to build an even greater and more successful business. Above all, this will facilitate our transformation into a direct-to-consumer company that rests on deep local foundations.”
According to the Economic Times, the key regional leadership team is as follows:
North Asia: Luke Kang will continue to lead North Asia (Greater China, Japan and Korea) business including direct country management of Mainland China and Japan.
India: Sanjay Gupta will be country manager of India and will also have direct responsibility for the studio business in the country.
Star Regional Media Networks: K Madhavan will lead Star India’s regional language Media Networks.
Southeast Asia: Zubin Gandevia has decided to leave the company but has agreed to remain for a period of time to help transition the leadership of media networks in Southeast Asia.
Emerging Markets and Content Sales: Amit Malhotra will lead emerging markets. He will also lead content sales for APAC (except North Asia), with a dual reporting to Janice Marinelli who heads DTCI’s global content sales and distribution.
Middle East: Chafic Najia will be country manager of Middle East Media cluster.
Australia/New Zealand (ANZ): Kylie Watson-Wheeler will continue to serve as country manager of Australian and New Zealand business with direct responsibility for Media Networks and Direct-to-Consumer.
Studios APAC: Kurt Rieder will lead the studio business for APAC (except India).