SkyShowtime Appoints BBC Choose’s Jon Farrar as Head of Programming

SkyShowtime — the three way partnership between Comcast and Paramount World — has unveiled key hires for the European streaming service, together with its head of programming.

BBC Choose government Jon Farrar has been named head of programming, Selection can reveal. The manager joins from BBC Studios, the place he led the direct-to-consumer programming technique in his twin function as world VOD director and editor-in-chief of North American SVOD service BBC Choose.

Farrar was additionally a part of the workforce that developed BritBox, the streaming three way partnership between BBC Studios and ITV.

Reporting into SkyShowtime CEO Monty Sarhan, Farrar might be accountable for programming technique, overseeing the platform’s pipeline of studio content material, and constructing a programming workforce throughout SkyShowtime’s 20 markets to develop unique and native content material. Farrar may also lead the acquisitions, scheduling and editorial, in addition to content material operations capabilities.

First unveiled in August 2021, SkyShowtime is meant to sit down within the European markets that are not already serviced by Paramount+. The streaming service, which is about to launch in Europe later this 12 months, will function the TV premieres of first-run theatrical movies from Paramount and Common; new scripted collection from Showtime, Paramount+, Sky Studios and Peacock; native unique programming; and youngsters and household programming from Nickelodeon, DreamWorks and Illumination.

Farrar mentioned: “I’m so thrilled to be taking over this function which, for a fan of nice program, is essentially the most thrilling job in European streaming. I can’t wait to begin working with Monty and the workforce on how we take a singular strategy to deliver SkyShowtime, with its good content material pipeline, to audiences throughout the continent.”

Elsewhere, Raquel Berzosa has been appointed regional common supervisor for Iberia, and might be accountable for increasing SkyShowtime in Spain and Portugal.

She is going to construct and lead the regional distribution and partnerships group, and oversee advertising and marketing and content material throughout Iberia. She joins from NBCUniversal Worldwide Networks and DTC, the place she was VP of affiliate gross sales and nation lead for Iberia. Berzosa has intensive expertise negotiating with companions in Spain and Portugal, and helped to launch the Common+ on-demand service, which is at the moment out there on three of the 4 primary platforms in Spain.

Primarily based in Madrid, Berzosa may also report back to Sarhan. She joins Gabor Harsanyi and Henriette Petersen, regional common managers for Central Japanese Europe and North Europe, respectively.

Berzosa mentioned: “This function is a dream come true for somebody who’s as enthusiastic about leisure as I’m. I’m thrilled to be becoming a member of Monty’s management workforce. The curiosity from distributors has been overwhelming and I look ahead to bringing SkyShowtime’s wonderful content material to our audiences in Spain and Portugal.”

Lastly, Richard Thurston additionally joins SkyShowtime as chief HR officer. Thurston joins the workforce after 10 years at Sky the place he held a number of management roles, together with his most up-to-date group function as HR director. Earlier than becoming a member of Sky, Thurston labored for the BBC as HR director of the BBC Information Group, supporting groups throughout the globe. Previous to this, he spent 7 years at ITV. Thurston will report back to Sarhan.

Thurston mentioned: “I used to be lucky sufficient to have been concerned in laying the foundations of SkyShowtime since inception, so the chance to proceed to be a part of the journey of this distinctive enterprise because it grows and connects to clients is vastly thrilling. I’m enthusiastic about creating inclusive, supportive environments, the place folks will be themselves, innovate and develop. I look ahead to working with the remainder of the management workforce and welcoming nice expertise to SkyShowtime.”

Sarhan mentioned: “An organization’s biggest useful resource is its folks and certainly one of my prime priorities has been to recruit people with a file of confirmed management to affix SkyShowtime. These three gifted people are all completed leaders who put folks first—from our subscribers to our teammates—and I’m proud that they are going to be becoming a member of us as we construct the subsequent nice streaming service for Europe.

SkyShowtime will finally be out there in Albania, Andorra, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Hungary, Kosovo, Montenegro, Netherlands, North Macedonia, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden.

Paramount+ might be out there within the UK, Eire, Italy, Germany, Switzerland and Austria.

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