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Disney reorganises business units to ‘allow for more efficient management’

The Walt Disney Company’s direct-to-consumer and international (DTCI) segment has restructured its consolidated international business units under three key leaders. This comes as part of the integration planning for the pending acquisition of Twenty-First Century Fox, and allows for more efficient management of the company’s portfolio of assets and the optimisation of resources applied in support of the company’s strategic priorities.

Upon the completion of the acquisition, DTCI’s international operating structure and executive management will include Asia Pacific, Latin America and Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA). Current president of 21st Century Fox, Asia and chairman and CEO of Star India, Uday Shankar (pictured), will helm the new role of chairman, Star and Disney India, and president, The Walt Disney Company Asia Pacific.

Reporting to Shankar as part of the Asia Pacific leadership team are Luke Kang, executive VP and MD, Greater China, Japan and Korea; Kylie Watson-Wheeler, managing director, Australia and New Zealand; and Chafic Najia, senior VP and MD, Middle East.

In EMEA, Rebecca Campbell, who currently serves as president, The Walt Disney Company EMEA, will maintain oversight of this region and adds oversight of Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS). Reporting to her are  Jan Koeppen, currently president of Fox Networks Group Europe and Africa, who will serve as president, Television and Direct to Consumer, The Walt Disney Company EMEA; and  Marina Jigalova-Ozkan, who will continue in her current role as DTCI’s MD, Russia and CIS for The Walt Disney Company CIS.

Meanwhile in Latin America, current president, The Walt Disney Company Latin America, Diego Lerner, will maintain oversight of this region. Reporting to him is Carlos Martinez, president, Fox Networks Group, Latin America, who will serve as executive VP and GM, Media Networks, North and Brazil, The Walt Disney Company Latin America.

Additionally, Janice Marinelli will serve as president, global content sales and distribution. Responsible for DTCI’s integrated global content sales organization, she will lead and have oversight of the company’s  programming sales efforts for its combined portfolio of content, as well as the distribution of branded direct-to-consumer apps and services to broadcasters, digital services and other third-party distributors around the world.

Shankar, Campbell, Lerner and Marinelli will report to Kevin Mayer, chairman of The Walt Disney Company’s DTCI segment. DTCI plans to announce additional executives joining the three regional leadership teams as well as the global sales organisation in the coming weeks.

The planned restructuring of our business units outside of the US will result in a stronger, more agile organisation, one that is better able to pivot and capitalise on the many opportunities present in today’s fast-changing and increasingly complex global marketplace, Mayer said.

According to him, once the acquisition is complete, all three regions will be led by “exceptional, highly experienced” executives who will combine the “best of the best” talent from both organisations.

“This new structure and the outstanding leadership team we’ve put in place are clear demonstrations of our strong commitment to integrating operations and thoughtfully executing our strategic priorities around the globe,” Mayer added.

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