Turner Announces International Digital Ventures Division

Turner Announces International Digital Ventures Division

Turner Announces International Digital Ventures Division

Turner has announced a new International Digital Ventures division, which will oversee and develop services for mobile devices, including apps, games as well as OTT (over-the-top) video streaming services. Aksel van der Wal, the current senior vice president and chief financial officer, is promoted to the new role of executive vice president, digital ventures and innovation, for Turner International, effective from 1st January 2017. Trey Turner, currently senior vice president, corporate finance, mergers and acquisitions will be moving to Aksel van der Wal’s former post. The new international division will be based at Turner EMEA’s headquarters in London.

Interactive services is an expanding part of Turner’s business, especially Cartoon Network (and Boomerang), which has recently launched its Cartoon Network Anything app in several countries and launched live-streaming apps including Cartoon Network Go! in Latin America and Cartoon Network Watch and Play in the Asia-Pacific region. Cartoon Network’s library of web browser and mobile games is also growing rapidly along with Turner’s interactive services for its other channels.

From The Turner International Press Release

Global media company Turner today (08/11/2016) announced a new division to lead its digital innovation internationally.

Aksel van der Wal, currently senior vice president and chief financial officer, is promoted to the new role of executive vice president, digital ventures and innovation, for Turner’s international operations, effective January 1, 2017.

Under his leadership the new division will focus on driving profitable growth through international consumer-centric initiatives, including all of Turner’s international multi-platform suite of digital properties and its direct-to-consumer product strategy. He remains responsible for the company’s international technology & operations (T&O) organisation.

In close co-operation with the Turner International presidents, van der Wal has the responsibility for the existing portfolio of international products and services on the web, for smart phones, games, apps and OTT, and he will also be charged with developing new digital direct-to-consumer businesses, leading a cross-platform business intelligence function that drives consumer insight; managing the internal T&O infrastructure; and helping to implement the strategy of the non-linear ad sales business. Additionally, he will identify new opportunities for Turner and decide on how to engage in those new areas, through technological product innovation and/or acquisitions.

“As our industry undergoes huge evolution, the impact of digital disruption and changing consumer behaviour continues to put audience insight right at the heart of our business strategy,” said Gerhard Zeiler, president, Turner International, to whom van der Wal will report. “This new division will ensure that we assess new opportunities for innovation, development and acquisition through the lens of relevant, robust consumer data and through a realigned, agile organisational structure. Aksel’s experience in transformative management, his first-class understanding of both the linear and digital media landscapes, and his detailed knowledge of Turner’s international operation, all combine to make him a superb fit for this new role.”

In his role as chief financial officer for Turner International, van der Wal will be succeeded by Trey Turner, currently senior vice president, corporate finance, mergers and acquisitions, who takes up his new role January 1, 2017 as well.

Based in Atlanta, Turner will report to Pascal Desroches, executive vice president, and chief financial officer of Turner, while working closely with Zeiler. He will be responsible for all of International’s financial operations and will be an active partner and contributor in shaping the direction of the company’s international business and implementing its strategy.

“Trey has the perfect experience to lead the business, capital and budgeting activities for our international businesses,” said Pascal Desroches. “He has acquired a depth of knowledge about our company and brings great passion and significant experience to the role. We expect Trey to play a key role in helping us expand our global operations.”

Aksel van der Wal joined Turner in 2014 as CFO, Turner EMEA and was promoted to senior vice president and CFO, International, in June 2015. Before joining Turner, van der Wal worked for three years and served as CEO, Time Out, at its two main business sites, London and New York City. His leadership of its global operations embraced digital expansion, a complete overhaul of its digital platforms, new e-commerce operations and the revitalization of its traditional businesses through innovative approaches. Prior to Time Out, he was CFO at leading online ticket exchange operation Seatwave, and previously held senior financial and business development roles at Vodafone including CFO of partner markets. He started his career at PricewaterhouseCoopers. He has an MBA from INSEAD, and a LLM tax law from Leiden University, NL. A native Dutch speaker and fluent in English, he also speaks German, French and Spanish.

Trey Turner is currently SVP, corporate finance, mergers and acquisitions for Turner, overseeing consolidated financial planning and corporate development activities for the company. Before his current role, Turner was director of finance for CNN worldwide where he was responsible for strategic finance support, leading the financial analysis and business justification for new initiatives, partnerships, and investments. Prior to joining the company, Turner was with the corporate finance department of Stephens Inc., a leading investment bank and private equity firm. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in analytical finance from Wake Forest University, where he graduated cum laude, and currently serves on the Alumni Council for the School of Business.


Infinity Train New Cartoon Network Studios Pilot

Infinity Train New Cartoon Network Studios Pilot

Infinity Train New Cartoon Network Studios Pilot

Cartoon Network USA has uploaded another new animated pilot today (02/11/2016) onto YouTube called Infinity Train. In Infinity Train, the main protagonist, Tulip, must learn to set her personal interests aside to make her way through a mysterious train and help the king of all corgis save his people. Tulip is aided and accompanied by her robot friend – One-One. Infinity Train as the name implies is a train that goes on forever and each carriage has different world or/and theme, if this show is greenlit there’s a lot of potential for story ideas.

Judging from the short, it’s similar to the Adventure Time episode “Dungeon Train” but with the randomness and surrealness of Regular Show and has an Over The Garden Wall feel too as the main character is trapped in a strange environment.

Infinity Train is created, written and storyboarded by Regular Show’s Owen Dennis, with Over The Garden Wall’s Nick Cross working as Art Director. According to YouTube comments on the pilot’s video so far, viewers reception has been positive, but ultimately it’s Cartoon Network’s decision whether they wish to greenlight the show (same with Victor & Valentino), either as a short-form series on the Cartoon Network Anything app or as an animated series.


Cartoon Network UK 2016 PromaxBDA UK Award Nominations

Cartoon Network UK 2016 PromaxBDA UK Award Nominations

Cartoon Network UK 2016 PromaxBDA UK Award Nominations

PromaxDBA have posted their award nominations for the 2016 PromaxBDA UK Awards in November and Cartoon Network UK has been nominated in several categories, ranging from Best Children’s Promo to Sponsorship to Best Use of Digital Media. The PromaxBDA UK Awards is an annual event to celebrate the very best of what the British creative television marketing, promotion, branding & design industry has to offer.

The 2016 PromaxBDA UK awards will take place on Friday 4th November at Here East at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London, on the day prior to the awards ceremony (Thursday 3rd November) there will be a conference with creative, marketing and tech experts from different parts of the UK media industry. The purpose of the conference to highlight the latest trends and to look for new innovative ideas that work from a marketing and creative perspective.

List of all of Cartoon Network UK’s 2016 PromaxBDA UK Award nominations:

Best Children’s Promo (originated): One Nomination

Adventure Time Acapella

Best Content Or Long Form: One Nomination

Adventure Time Acapella

Best Direct Response Promo Kids: Three Nominations

Promotion for Cartoon Network Anything
Cartoon Network Christmas Ice King Countdown
Clarks Gloforms – Cartoon Network News

Best Sponsorship Package: Two Nominations

Weetabuddies (Weetabix) sponsors Breakfast Funnies on Cartoon Network
Hexbug Nano sponsors The Comedy Club on Cartoon Network

Best Use Of Digital Media: One Nomination

Adventure Time: An Ooo Experience

Best Use Of Public Relations: One Nomination

Adventure Time: An Ooo Experience

Best Children’s Promo (clip-based): Two Nominations*

Lumpy Space Princess: Smooth Posers
Clarence – Nailed It!*

* Produced by Blacklist Creative Ltd. for Cartoon Network

Other Turner UK Nominations

Turner UK’s general entertainment and movie channels have also been awarded 2016 Promax BDA UK nominations, the nominations for TruTV and TCM are listed below:

Best Entertainment Promo

TruTV: America’s Got Talent- We Will Rock You

Best Sponsorship Package

TCM: What’s on TV sponsors Christmas on TCM

Best Print Based Ad Or Poster

TruTV: RuPaul’s Drag Race: May Contain Nuts

Best of luck to Turner UK on the 4th November!