BBC Worldwide, the main commercial arm and a wholly owned subsidiary of the BBC, today announced that Ted Lai is to join as Executive Vice-President (EVP) for Asia with effect from 1 December 2011.
This is the final appointment in a line-up of three newly appointed regional EVPs, with Fred Medina appointed for Latin America and Joerg Bachmaier for EMEA earlier this month, as BBC Worldwide focuses increasingly on international revenue opportunities. All three EVPs will be responsible for BBC Worldwide’s strategic development in their regions, driving future growth through new brand, product and service initiatives.
Lai will be based in Hong Kong and will report to Steve Macallister, President & Managing Director Worldwide Sales & Distribution and the Managing Director responsible for Asia on BBC Worldwide’s Executive Committee. He will work closely with existing members of BBC Worldwide’s management team in the region.
Lai joins BBC Worldwide after more than a decade at Time Warner, where he was most recently Senior Vice President of Warner Bros. International TV. In this role, he launched and managed the WarnerTV channel and Warner-branded subscription and ad-supported video-on-demand businesses across the Asia region, as well as the TV distribution and format licensing/local TV production businesses in China and Korea.
Prior to joining Time Warner, Lai was a business development and product management executive in the digital media industry, working at several high-profile companies, including idealab’s FreePC from inception to merger and IPO. He also developed strategic plans for theme parks and location-based entertainment centres for the Walt Disney Company. Lai earned his MBA at Harvard Business School and Masters and Bachelors Degrees in Engineering at Stanford University.
Steve Macallister, BBC Worldwide President & MD Worldwide Sales & Distribution and Asia, said: “Having lived and worked in the region for many years, Ted has in-depth knowledge of the vibrant and rapidly evolving Asian media market. We are delighted to have someone of his expertise and breadth of experience joining us as we extend our business and brands further in Asia. We see a huge opportunity for BBC Worldwide in the region.”
Ted Lai said: “I am thrilled to be joining BBC Worldwide, a world-class organisation with a broad range of award-winning brands and talent that are becoming increasingly popular in Asia. From the China Showcase sales event and local productions of Dancing with the Stars and Top Gear, to the fast-growing BBC channels across the region, the company has already achieved a level of success across Asia. My intent is to substantially build on this by working closely with all BBC Worldwide teams to identify new opportunities to bring BBC Worldwide’s breadth of quality content and brands across all platforms to the billions of consumers throughout Asia.”