Viacom today announced four internal appointments and two new additions to its Distribution and Business Development group as the company continues to execute on its strategic plan to strengthen its distribution partnerships.
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Samantha Cooper, Executive Vice President of Distribution Partnerships, Viacom (Photo: Business Wire)
Samantha Cooper and Deena Demasi have been elevated to Executive Vice President, and will continue to report directly to Tom Gorke, EVP, Head of Distribution and Business Development. Demasi will also report to Dario Spina, EVP and Chief Marketing Officer of Viacom Velocity, which will help bring full-service content solutions to super-serve Viacom’s partners.
In addition to leading the team responsible for negotiating and securing all linear and digital distribution deals across domestic Viacom media networks, Cooper will work to deepen the company’s commitment to more client-centric relationships with distribution partners. A seasoned executive with extensive experience and relationships in the cable distribution industry, Cooper most recently served as Senior Vice President in the Distribution Sales group. During her 20-year career at Viacom, she has been a strong advocate for the company’s brands and a powerful force behind its expansion across cable, satellite and telco providers. She has also led Viacom’s digital content distribution deals with subscription video aggregators, electronic sell-through providers and other emerging content distributors.
As EVP of Distribution Marketing, Demasi will continue to guide content distribution marketing, communications and client experience for Viacom and its brands, and will expand her work with Viacom Velocity and other internal stakeholders to help re-envision the company’s distributor relationships. A senior member of the Content Distribution team since 2004, Demasi previously served as SVP of Content Distribution Marketing. In that role, Demasi was charged with developing strategic marketing initiatives to drive awareness for Viacom’s portfolio of brands, partnering with distributors to market their services and advance their goals, guiding TV Everywhere messaging, and leading the renewal marketing strategy.
Said Tom Gorke, “These moves ensure we have the right management team and structure in place to evolve Viacom’s approach to our content distribution partnerships. With leaders like Sam and Deena now fully empowered to execute our strategic initiatives, I am confident we can cement Viacom as the go-to provider for our partners who seek more innovative and flexible opportunities to serve their customers and expand their business.”
Along with the appointments of Demasi and Cooper, Viacom has named Andrew Borak as SVP of Distribution Marketing, reporting to Demasi, and Sheri Weidner as SVP of Distribution Partnerships, reporting to Cooper. Borak will be responsible for Viacom’s integrated marketing strategy with its existing and emerging distribution partners to drive awareness for Viacom’s portfolio of media brands. He previously served as Vice President of Content Distribution Marketing since 2012. Weidner will take on greater responsibility in leading negotiations and strengthening Viacom’s relationships with an expanded account portfolio of linear and digital distribution partners. She assumes the position of SVP after serving as Vice President on the Content Distribution Sales team since 2010.
Viacom is also bolstering the Distribution and Business Development team with two key hires. Josh Clark joins the department as SVP of Distribution Partnerships after previously serving as Vice President of Programming at DISH Network. In that role, he led negotiations for broadcast and cable network rights across satellite and OTT platforms. Prior to DISH, Clark held positions in digital distribution and business development at NBC Universal. Additionally, Richelle Clements has been hired as SVP, Deal Finance, a role in which she will lead distribution deal analysis, financial strategy and analytics. Clements previously worked at Credit Suisse where she was a Director in the Technology, Media and Telecommunications Group of the Investment Banking Division.
Viacom is home to premier global media brands that create compelling television programs, motion pictures, short-form content, apps, games, consumer products, social media experiences, and other entertainment content for audiences in more than 180 countries. Viacom's media networks, including Nickelodeon, Comedy Central, MTV, VH1, Spike, BET, CMT, TV Land, Nick at Nite, Nick Jr., Logo, Nicktoons, TeenNick, Channel 5 (UK), Telefe (Argentina) and Paramount Channel, reach over 3.9 billion cumulative television subscribers worldwide. Paramount Pictures is a major global producer and distributor of filmed entertainment.