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AMC networks announces key updates to leadership team

AMC Networks today announced updates to its Leadership team, with veteran entertainment industry marketing executive Len Fogge joining the company as President, Marketing, and AMC Networks’ President, Streaming Services Miquel Penella taking on an expanded role to now include oversight of the company’s global division, AMC Networks International. Fogge and Penella both report to AMC Networks Interim CEO Matt Blank.

As President, Marketing, Fogge will lead global marketing and brand strategy including performance marketing, creative, and social for AMC Networks’ domestic and international portfolio of entertainment brands including its streaming services AMC+, Acorn TV, ALLBLK, Shudder, Sundance Now and HIDIVE as well as AMC, BBC AMERICA, IFC, SundanceTV and WE tv.

Penella in his newly-expanded role will add oversight of AMC Networks International, the company’s global division that reaches subscribers in more than 125 countries through global brands and popular locally recognized channels in various programming genres. Currently Penella leads the company’s streaming business including AMC+ and its targeted streaming portfolio as well as WE tv and IFC Films, its independent film distribution business.

The news comes as AMC Networks’ fast-growing streaming portfolio recently topped 9.5 million subscribers and during the biggest year of original programming in the company’s history, including the recent debut of the final season of AMC’s acclaimed original series Better Call Saul; the upcoming George R.R. Martin and Robert Redford-produced noir thriller Dark Winds; Tales of the Walking Dead, the highly-anticipated new series in the expanding universe and franchise around The Walking Dead; and later this year, the final season of The Walking Dead flagship series; and the launch of two new series in the company’s newest franchise, Anne Rice’s Interview with the Vampire and Anne Rice’s Mayfair Witches.

“As we advance our differentiated targeted streaming strategy and continue our legacy of curating and showcasing excellent premium content, I couldn’t be more pleased to have Len and Miquel in these key roles,” said Blank. “I had the benefit of working with Len for many years at Showtime and there’s no one better when it comes to elevating brands and putting the customer experience first. Under Miquel, our streaming business has flourished, and with this new expanded role our international and streaming operations will be more closely aligned, enabling us to accelerate our growth.”

Len Fogge joins AMC Networks after serving as a marketing consultant for the company for the past several months in which he oversaw the strong debut of the final season of Better Call Saul, which helped drive the most new subscribers of any premiere in the history of the company’s AMC+ premium streaming bundle.

Fogge was formerly President, Marketing and Digital for NBC Entertainment, where he led all strategy, branding, creative, paid media, digital and social and partnership marketing initiatives for NBC’s Primetime, Daytime and Late Night dayparts, including overseeing notable series launches such as The Voice, The Blacklist, The Dick Wolf Chicago franchise, America’s Got Talent and This is Us.

Previously Fogge was EVP, Creative Marketing, Research and Digital at Showtime Networks, where he oversaw all creative as well as its in-house agency, supervised consumer and trade advertising, online, direct marketing, media and consumer promotions. At Showtime he led groundbreaking integrated marketing campaigns for hits including Dexter, Weeds, Queer as Folk, The Tudors and Shameless. During his tenure, Showtime’s subscription base expanded to record levels and the company re-branded as one of the leading forces in television.

Fogge honed his skills in entertainment marketing while at Grey Entertainment, where he was ultimately appointed its president. He was instrumental in building Grey into the largest entertainment ad agency in the U.S. with his work including advertising for films from Warner Bros. and Columbia Pictures, and Broadway shows. He was also responsible for ABC Network, People and InStyle magazines and Radio City Music Hall, among others.

For the past decade, Fogge has been an annual guest lecturer at USC and UCLA business schools. He served on the board of CTAM which he chaired, and also on the CTAM/Harvard Education Foundation board. He received the Vanguard award for Marketing and numerous Andy, Promax and Mark awards. He is a former Board member of The New Dramatists and the marketing committee of the Manhattan Theater Club.

Prior to joining AMC Networks, Miquel Penella was CEO of RLJ Entertainment, where he built the sought-after subscription streaming services Acorn TV, known for its high-quality British and international mysteries and dramas, and UMC (now ALLBLK), the first and largest subscription streaming service dedicated to Black film and television.

From October 2012 until January 2013, he served as Chief Operating Officer and he has also served as a director of RLJE since October 2012. From 2007 to October 2012, Penella was Chief Executive Officer of Acorn Media Group, Inc. (which was acquired by RLJE in October 2012) where he oversaw operations and was the driving force behind the worldwide expansion of the Acorn brand, including the acquisition of a majority of Agatha Christie Limited and the launch of Acorn TV, the Company’s first proprietary subscription SVOD channel. From 2004 to 2007, Penella was President of Acorn’s direct-to-consumer operations offering DVDs and other high quality products through catalogs and online marketing vehicles. Under his leadership, Acorn Media was transformed from a DVD distributor into a media company with a significant library of television dramas and mysteries, including intellectual property rights, and a nascent proprietary SVOD business.

Penella came to Acorn from Time-Life where he rose in the ranks from circulation director of the catalog department to director of catalogs for the music division and then to vice president of customer marketing in 2001. Previously, he worked in e-commerce catalog management for the National Direct Marketing Corporation and the National Wildlife Federation. BCS Bureau

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