Disney’s about to lose its Media Distribution president, Ben Pyne, who says he’ll end his 25-year run this summer. There’s no word yet on his replacement.
Pyne represents Disney on Hulu’s board and has overseen global distribution and sales for Disney’s entertainment and news on all platforms including digital outlets such as Netflix, Hulu and iTunes.
Pyne was instrumental in promoting Disney Channel, negotiating retransmission consent deals for ABC-owned stations, and strengthening relationships with ABC affiliates.
“What he’s built here at Disney, and what he’s been able to accomplish over the past 25 years, is truly remarkable,” says Pyne’s boss, Disney-ABC Business Operations President Bruce Rosenblum. “While we’ll be sad to see him leave, we’re excited to see what his next chapter holds.”
Among other things, Pyne made deals to put Disney content on video on demand and subscription VOD platforms. That includes the Disney Channel On Demand subscription service and, in 2007, a first-ever VOD offering for ABC that disables fast forwarding, so viewers can’t speed through the ads.
In addition, he helped to rebrand Toon Disney to Disney XD, and with the 2012 launch of Disney Junior. He also arranged deals that sent Disney content to mobile services. In 2013 he was behind the launch of Watch ABC, the company’s TV Everywhere offering.
Pyne became president, Global Distribution, for Disney Media Networks in 2007.