UKTV appoints Simon Michaelides as CCO and expands Commercial department

Simon M

Wednesday 1 June 2016

Britain's biggest multichannel broadcaster, UKTV, has appointed Simon Michaelides as Chief Commercial Officer (CCO), to head up a newly expanded team.

Sitting on the Executive Board and reporting to the Chief Executive, Simon is responsible for UKTV's commercial strategy and implementation, with accountability for all linear and non-linear pay TV platforms, UKTV's Video on Demand (VOD) businesses, international programme sales, new business development, and all external commercial relationships.

Starting with immediate effect, Simon's role is to set UKTV up for success in the next phase of its growth, by building enduring partnerships and focusing on adding long-term value to the business. He is tasked with increasing the distribution of UKTV products; accelerating the commercial impact of UKTV's VOD services, including its own offering, UKTV Play.

Simon will champion UKTV's unparalleled growth in the market, and lead an expanded team of future-facing specialists. Digital strategy expert, former Director of Digital for Ireland's TV3 Group, Jill O'Brien, has been hired as UKTV's Commercial Director. Two new Heads of Distribution are currently being recruited. And to support the rapid growth of UKTV Play, Emma Boston has been appointed as General Manager for VOD. Meredith Coral's role has been extended to include international programme sales, alongside new business innovation.

Darren Childs, UKTV CEO, said,

Simon's strategic approach to brand and content marketing has driven awareness of UKTV's channels and its programmes; helping position us as the third largest commercial broadcaster in Britain. His knowledge of our business and marketplace, and his relationships with our highly-valued affiliate partners, positions him perfectly to lead our expert commercial team, which is being expanded to support UKTV's further growth.

Simon said,

I'm delighted and honoured to take on the commercial responsibilities at UKTV as CCO. It marks an exciting inflection point in the life of the company: after five consecutive years of market defying growth, it's about step-changing our commercial approach to consolidate the gains we've made and build for the future; cementing partnerships new and old, and innovating to maintain a winning formula in an increasingly unpredictable market.

Today the company has also announced the promotion of Zoe Clapp to Chief Marketing and Communications Officer. She is tasked with leading an 85-strong team, and working closely with Controller, Emma Tennant to grow the viewership and reputation of UKTV's network of award-winning brands. In addition to her prior remit overseeing Communications, she will also take responsibility for UKTV's Creative, Digital, Marketing and Media departments.

As CMO, Zoë will oversee UKTV's in-house high-tech production facility, managed by post-production house The Farm, which creates over 2,500 on-air promos and 700 pieces of navigational content a year. She will also be accountable for agency relationships with Edelman, Joint, Mmmultiply and Rocket (Omnicom Media Group).

UKTV has recently celebrated its most successful year, with record viewing share reaching 5.27%, and year-end share of commercial impacts hitting 9.31%, beating Channel 5's portfolio and all of Sky's wholly owned channels for the very first time.

About Simon Michaelides

Simon joined UKTV as Marketing Director in 2012, with a 'change' brief to create a brand-centric operating model, up UKTV's marketing capability, and help accelerate the company's growth trajectory by driving a more strategic, analytical and commercial business approach. Responsible for all branding and marketing communication (B2C and B2B) across the network, he led the marketing, creative services and media planning departments, contributing, with the rest of the Executive Leadership Team, to four consecutive years of record growth.

Key achievements over the four years he spent in this role include overseeing the development and launches of the consumer-facing UKTV Network, new Drama channel and UKTV Play brands. He also led his team on brand refreshes of Dave, Gold, Really and Alibi, and successfully brought the business' creative services in house for the first time.

Simon has over 18 years of experience leading the Commercial and Marketing agendas for major household name businesses. He has worked on both the client and agency side, across multiple geographies and industries; including broadcast entertainment, management consultancy, and fast moving consumer goods.

Simon joined UKTV from Kantar Retail, the consultancy arm of WPP, having worked internationally with blue-chip organisations such as Coke, Kraft, Starbucks, and Bacardi-Martini. Other experience includes 13 years at Procter & Gamble, and PepsiCo, managing leading brands such as Walkers Crisps, Tropicana, Flash and Fairy Liquid; as well as entrepreneurial ventures such as Naked smoothies.


For more information contact:

Lara Feinstein, Network Communications Executive

Notes to editors

About UKTV

UKTV is the biggest multichannel broadcaster in the UK.

The award-winning independent has eleven imaginative brands - UKTV Play, Dave, W, Gold, Alibi, Yesterday, Drama, Really, Home, Eden and Good Food. These include the two most popular non-PSB channels in the UK and account for 9.31% of the British commercial TV market.

The company's most recent financial results showed record-breaking year-end revenue of £283m and EBITDA of £74.1m. It invested £123m in programming and related launches last year, and is becoming an increasingly significant investor in UK creativity.

UKTV has a truly innovative model, curating brand-defining commissions, high-profile acquisitions and the very best of BBC, alongside programmes originally shown on ITV and Channel 4. The network embraces technology to deliver inspired channels to audiences through Freeview, Sky, Virgin Media, BT, TalkTalk, YouView, Freesat, Amazon Fire and UKTV Play, and distributes its highly valued original programmes to 200 territories.

Now celebrating its 23rd year at the forefront of digital television, UKTV - an independent commercial joint venture between BBC Worldwide and Scripps Networks Interactive, Inc. (SNI) - is proud to be the only British television broadcaster in The Sunday Times top 100 companies list. / / @uktv_press