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Digital Drivers 2015: Retail/Technology/Other


MICHAEL PAULL, VP, digital video
Paull spearheads the digital video business, overseeing the development and growth of digital transaction platform Amazon Instant Video and subscription streaming service Prime Instant Video. He has been instrumental in helping launch Ultra HD movies and TV shows.

BRAD BEALE, VP, digital content acquisition
Beale spearheads the licensing of content for Instant Video and Prime Instant Video. This year he extended an existing content license deal with Epix. He also secured exclusive online rights to Starz Digital Media’s “The White Queen.” But perhaps Beale’s biggest coup was signing director Woody Allen to create his first-ever TV series for Prime Instant Video.

CBS All Access

ROB GELICK, SVP and GM, digital platforms, CBS Interactive
With CBS’s push into OTT video, Gelick is using his seven years at CBS Interactive to guide the company as it brings content direct to consumers. Prior to CBS, he co-founded mobile virtual operator Helio and served as its VP of data services. He also served at Motorola’s Global Entertainment Solutions Group, where he helped negotiate the company’s strategic alliance with Apple to get the iTunes digital music service to mobile devices.


MATTHEW STRAUSS, EVP and GM, video services
Strauss is responsible for the ongoing rollout of the first cloud-based set-top box, the X1 Entertainment Operating System; driving enhancements in the TV Everywhere experience; and championing the most robust VOD platform in the business, Xfinity On Demand.

MICHAEL SCHREIBER, SVP, content acquisition
Schreiber is one of the lead negotiators of key programming agreements and renewals, and oversees content acquisition for Xfinity On Demand, TV Everywhere, the Xfinity Digital Store, Streampix, advanced advertising, and other emerging platforms. His team has collaborated with programmers to double the company’s live streaming networks on Xfinity TV Go, and they also helped round out the top 100 TV shows on Xfinity On Demand and increase its collection of full-season content to more than 500 series.

ANDY HUNTER, VP, programming, video services
Hunter manages editorial and programming across all video platforms and consumer touch points, including Xfinity On Demand and the Xfinity TV Go website and app. Hunter’s team works closely with content partners to bring their programming to as many platforms as possible and help Xfinity TV customers find and discover all the great content available to them as part of their subscription.

DANIEL SPINOSA, VP and GM, movies, PPV and commerce, video services
Spinosa is responsible for developing the rental, subscription and transactional content available on all Xfinity TV platforms. Notably, he led the launch of the Xfinity Digital Store. Since its launch in 2014, the store serves as one of the top digital retailers of new-release movies in the country.


MARK TEITELL, Digital Entertainment Content Ecosystem (DECE)
Teitell heads the alliance of approximately 75 companies, including many of the world’s top movie studios, entertainment retailers and video service providers, technology companies, and device makers, behind UltraViolet, a home entertainment industry standard that lets consumers take full advantage of the benefits of the cloud to enjoy their movie and TV show collections anytime, anywhere. He works closely with member companies to accelerate the adoption of UltraViolet, which has attracted more than 22 million consumer accounts in 13 countries.

YVES CAILLAUD, managing director, Europe, DECE
Caillaud joined the consortium in 2013 and is leveraging his 20-plus years of experience in home entertainment to develop, manage and implement all industry marketing and business development initiatives in support of UltraViolet’s European expansion. UltraViolet is now available in the U.S., U.K., Ireland, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg.


AMY JO SMITH, president, DEG: The Digital Entertainment Group
The DEG serves the home entertainment industry as a leading trade association. The group advocates and promotes home entertainment products and services. Representing some 70 leading media and entertainment companies, the DEG is spearheaded by Smith. Its members look to her to guide the association’s agenda, which is driving key industry initiatives such as 4K Ultra HD, advancing collection of digital content, improving the digital ecosystem and high-resolution audio.


THOMAS ASHLEY, founder and CEO
Ashley has helped FlixFling differentiate itself from its competitors by offering its customers a cloud-based digital locker system, transactional VOD and SVOD. FlixFling caters to independent film fans and is now featured on consumer electronics brands such as Roku, LG, Samsung, Android, Apple iOS, and Xbox, among others. Ashley also inked FlixFling’s first retail UltraViolet deal with Movie Stop.


JAMIE ROSENBERG, VP of digital content
Rosenberg leads a cross-functional team that includes product development, engineering, content merchandising, business partnerships and operations for Google Play, Google’s digital content store offering apps, games, music, movies and books.


Hopkins joined Hulu in 2013 with a mandate from corporate owners Walt Disney, 21st Century Fox and NBC Universal to make Hulu Plus a significant SVOD challenger to Netflix and Amazon Prime Instant Video. He brings more than 20 years of video experience to Hulu and has an accomplished track record of both building innovative television products and negotiating landmark distribution agreements.

TIM CONNOLLY, SVP, head of distribution
Connolly is responsible for driving subscriber and audience growth by working with partners. His team manages relationships with device manufacturers such as Apple, Roku and Google, MVPDs such as Cablevision, and other industry players including American Express. Most recently, he managed digital distribution and new product development for the Disney and ESPN TV networks.

CRAIG ERWICH, SVP, head of content
Erwich comes from Warner Horizon Television (WHTV), a division of Warner Bros. Television Group, where he oversaw development, production and business operations. He specialized in the creation of scripted series for the cable marketplace, and unscripted series for broadcast networks and cable.

Lim comes from Sony Network Entertainment International, where as SVP of product engineering, he was responsible for overseeing North American engineering and operations, including client and service engineering for the PlayStation Store on PS3 and PS4, as well as many of the network features of the PS4. Prior to that he worked at Microsoft Xbox, where he was director of development for Microsoft Xbox Live and Platform.


Srinivasan has spearheaded content licensing agreements with most major studios to download Blu-ray-quality content from a proprietary server. This month he inked a content licensing deal with The Walt Disney Studios. Owners of the Kaleidescape Alto movie player can now purchase library and new-release movies from Disney, Walt Disney Animation Studios, Marvel Studios, Lucasfilm and Touchstone Pictures.

Level 3

Teets focuses on simplifying Level 3’s operating environment and collaborates with marketing and network technology to innovate new capabilities to support customers’ network and service needs.

Waters focuses on global network technology, architecture, engineering, process and security. Waters joined Level 3 in 1997 and has held numerous roles with the company spanning operations and engineering. Prior to his current role, Waters led Level 3’s global operations team.


JOSEPH DEPALO, SVP, CDN engineering and operations
DePalo manages all physical infrastructure and software components for Limelight’s global network. His responsibilities extend to network/systems engineering, architecture, the network operations center, traffic engineering, customer support, professional services and beyond. In this position, he manages many of the largest online events.


Louvion has been instrumental to the company’s success from its early days to its current status as a leading disruptor in the VOD space. He works closely with the executive team to oversee daily operations and strategic direction of the organization. A champion of seamless user experiences, Louvion is committed to a holistic product and technology strategy, including platform and application development, deployment and user experience.

Douglas is responsible for creating and developing key relationships with content providers to deliver access to M-Go’s latest releases and catalog titles. He helped position M-Go as an industry leader that was first to market 4K content both for streaming and download. With more than 20 years of experience monetizing content for leading companies in entertainment such as DreamWorks, Paramount Pictures, 20th Century Fox, The Walt Disney Company and Showtime/Viacom, to innovating content retail for some of the world’s biggest retailers such as Walmart, Target, Best Buy, and Amazon, Douglas is an expert in the economics of digital content.


REED HASTINGS, co-founder and CEO
Hastings co-founded Netflix in 1997. In 2002 he took the company public, and in 2003 it surpassed 1 million subscribers. Netflix began streaming content over the Internet in 2007 and today has more than 40 million subscribers globally.

TED SARANDOS, chief content officer
Sarandos oversees the Beverly Hills, Calif., office with a staff of more than 75 that manages the company’s content acquisitions, including original series and landmark content pacts with The Walt Disney Co. and DreamWorks Animation, among others.

NEIL HUNT, chief product officer
Hunt spearheads the product team, which designs, builds and optimizes Netflix’s SVOD business. He has been instrumental in the rollout of 4K-resolution streaming of select Netflix original programs, including “House of Cards” and  “Orange Is the New Black.”

GREGORY PETERS, chief streaming and partnerships officer
Peters is responsible for the global partnerships with consumer electronics companies, Internet service providers and multichannel video programming distributors. Prior to joining Netflix in 2008, Peters was SVP of consumer electronics products for Macrovision — later renamed Rovi Corp.


CHRIS ROBERTS, SVP, sales, on-demand products
A key figure at Rentrak for more than 25 years, Roberts created the industry’s digital measurement service for movies and TV content in 2013, Rentrak’s Digital Download Essentials Industry. Used by all the major studios and networks, the service provides competitive EST and iVOD intelligence in an evolving digital landscape.

VINCE MUSCARELLA, VP, studio digital services
Muscarella has more than 13 years of digital, VOD and home entertainment industry experience, including business development for all digital transactional and ad-supported accounts for Alchemy (previously Millennium Entertainment). Muscarella joined Rentrak more than three years ago and has helped grow Rentrak’s measurement services.


ANTHONY WOOD, founder and CEO
Wood founded Roku, which launched the Roku streaming player, the first device ever to stream Netflix, in 2008. Prior to founding Roku, he invented the digital video recorder and founded ReplayTV, where he served as president and CEO.

Saffron Digital

Since joining Saffron Digital, Keane has installed a new management team to launch OTT service platform MainStage, acquiring new clients that include KDDI (Japan), Carrefour (France), ITV (UK), BMW (Germany) and Lionsgate (USA).

Sling TV

Lynch led the creation and launch of Sling TV, Dish Network’s groundbreaking OTT service. Sling TV earned numerous awards at the 2015 International CES, including the show’s top honors: Best of CES 2015, Overall Winner. Lynch joined Dish in 2009 and led the successful relaunch of DishWorld (now Sling International) in 2012. Under his leadership, DishWorld grew its subscriber base more than tenfold.

SRUTA VOOTUKURU, VP, business development and operations
Under Vootukuru’s direction, Sling TV became the first OTT live Internet TV, featuring more than 20 live sports, news and entertainment networks in its “Best of Live TV” core package, plus seven add-on packs and a premium tier featuring HBO Now. She was also key in leading the company through the complex transition of DishWorld to Sling International.

Starz Digital Media

MICHAEL THORNTON, chief revenue officer
Thornton oversees Starz Distribution businesses, including Anchor Bay Entertainment, Starz Worldwide Distribution and Starz Digital Media. Additionally, Thornton spearheads programming acquisitions for the 17 Starz premium pay-TV channels, On Demand and online offerings.

Winokur is responsible for the strategy, operation and execution of Starz’s worldwide transactional, on-demand, subscription and ad-supported businesses across multiple digital platforms. She and her team manage the digital distribution, licensing, syndication, content and vendor relationships across a variety of partners and distributors.

SCOTT BARTON, SVP, branded digital content and products
Barton leads the programming and product vision for all on-demand, online, digital and consumer-facing video products and platforms, including Starz Play, Starz On Demand, Starz.com and other TV Everywhere services.

JASON WYRICK, VP, digital platforms
Wyrick oversees a team of more than 50 developers, creators and business analysts and is responsible for all technical aspects of externally facing systems including Starz Play, Encore Play, Movieplex Play, Starz.com and affiliate integrations. Wyrick also leads the digital platforms team in development, launch and ongoing management of digital products and services.


Antonellis since January 2014 has headed the largest global provider of premium content managed services and technical solutions servicing clients in 37 countries that reach more than 100 million households in many local languages. Vubiquity works closely with both content owners and service providers to enable anytime, anywhere access to content, helping its customers connect to and monetize opportunities in VOD, subscription services, EST, linear content delivery, TV Everywhere, advanced advertising and data services.


Last July, Verba was named to his current position at Vudu, the Walmart-owned transactional VOD and Digital HD platform. Last year, he helped Vudu join Disney Movies Anywhere as a participating retailer.

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