EXCLUSIVE: FremantleMedia International has hired former Red Arrow International exec Caroline Kusser as SVP, Sales and Distribution of its U.S. arm. The newly created position will see the exec based in LA and reporting to New York-based SEVP of Television & Digital Distribution for North America, Lisa Honig. Kusser was formerly SVP of Red Arrow North America from 2011.

caroline kusserHer new post will be to build FMI’s brand in the region and to maximize opportunities for the company’s 22,000 hours of content across linear, digital and home entertainment platforms. Fremantle licenses such series as the upcoming The Young Pope (whose producer, Wildside, was recently acquired by FremantleMedia); the Got Talent and X-Factor formats; Storage Wars; and Deadliest Catch. It also recently added Luther creator Neil Cross’ next project, Hard Sun as part of an increased focus on drama.

Kusser’s other previous positions include having set up content distribution service Carokusser, whose clients included ZDF Enterprises. She was part of the Red Arrow International team for 10 years, relocating to LA in 2011 to establish the group’s U.S. business. Before that, she held roles at Bavaria Media Television, peppermint and Beta Film in Germany.

Honig said, “Caroline’s vast experience, pivotal drama distribution knowledge and exceptional relationships in the U.S. will play an important part in FMI’s U.S. expansion strategy and push into high-end drama. With teams in both New York and LA, a well-established history of sales across multiple genres and long-standing client relationships, we’re in a good position to take our business up to the next level and Caroline’s understanding of this key market will help us to achieve further success.”

Kusser added, “It’s a really exciting time for FMI. I’m looking forward to joining its U.S. team and helping to further enhance its reputation across the region.”