VICE hires former Discovery CFO in dual role to jump-start APAC operations

VICE Media has appointed Nilesh Zaveri as its chief operating officer and chief financial officer of VICE Asia Pacific (APAC) based out of Singapore, the newly formed headquarters for VICE activity in the region. This appointment comes on the heels of VICE’s major expansion throughout the APAC region, announced earlier this month, that will see media and brand partnerships bring VICE content to hundreds of millions of additional viewers.

As COO and CFO of VICE APAC, Zaveri will oversee financial and operational strategy and management, with focus on expanding the business and brand across the region. He will also lead development of a financial system structure, implement corporate development practices in the region and manage strategic partnerships and talent recruitment.

Prior to joining VICE, Zaveri served as chief financial officer and senior vice president of finance and corporate operations for Discovery Networks APAC, where he oversaw all aspects of financial management and key business strategy and decisions across the APAC region. Before joining Discovery, Zaveri was regional CFO for Fox Sports Asia and held several roles at 21st Century Fox in Singapore, Hong Kong and Mumbai. Zaveri will report to  Simon.

Earlier this month, VICE announced its new APAC headquarters in Singapore would be led by VICE APAC CEO Hosi Simon. On Zaveri’s appointment, Simon said, “As we build out our Singapore headquarters into an engine for activity across the APAC region, we were looking for someone with deep experience in the region that can help us accelerate growth.”

“Zaveri’s expertise across the region, specifically in India, China, and Southeast Asia will have an immediate and significant impact as we continue to assemble top-tier talent and partner with leading media entities and brands throughout these territories,” he added.

Meanwhile Zaveri added, “This is a unique opportunity to be a part of an ambitious vision which allows me to leverage my Asia experience to develop successful business models. The online video market across APAC is the next frontier, and with VICE, which has an unrivalled understanding of youth media consumption habits, we are in a unique position of strength to unlock its true potential.”

VICE also revealed additional offices in Mumbai and Delhi, scheduled to open in the coming months.  The agency added that media partnerships with Times of India Group, DOCOMO Digital and Jawa Pos TV will help bring VICE content to viewers on multiple platforms throughout the region. Virtue Worldwide, the creative agency born out of VICE, has already partnered with leading global brands such as Unilever, Nike, National Basketball Association, Budweiser, BMW and Alexander Wang, to bring its full-scale creative services to the region.

It added that with an online video market that is expected to hit US$46 billion over the next five years, the APAC region is home to 60% of the world’s young people, according to the United Nations, demonstrating a significant opportunity for the youth-focused media brand.

In the APAC region, VICE currently has offices in Australia, New Zealand, Japan, China and Indonesia. This vast expansion in the region follows the series of deals VICE announced earlier this year, providing major inroads into the nascent mobile content market in the APAC region, and furthers VICE’s ability to bring content directly to young people on whatever screen they are watching. The series of deals will allow VICE to further cultivate the growing young audiences across the APAC region, growing its presence across multiple screens and reaching millions of new viewers across the region, according to VICE.

VICE has developed a global reputation for producing the gold standard of video content for young people, forging innovative distribution partnerships across mobile, digital and linear platforms with A+E Networks, HBO, YouTube, Snapchat, Sky, 20th Century Fox, Verizon, Canal+, and more to take its programming to young people everywhere. With these recent deals, VICE’s programming cuts across lifestyle, culture, news, sports, food and more, will be delivered to over 80 territories by Q1 2018.