Pluto TV, the ad-supported streaming service owned by ViacomCBS, has appointed a new head of product and SVP of programming.
Acquired by Viacom in early 2019 for $340 million, Pluto has nearly doubled its audience in the time since, now reaching more than 22 million monthly active viewers. Free, ad-supported services have gained popularity overall as smart TV and connected device penetration increases and viewership overall shifts towards streaming. Fox recently acquired Tubi TV, while Comcast bought Xumo and is rolling out Peacock, the NBCUniversal service with a free, ad-supported tier in addition to subscription levels.
Banerjee will oversee the product roadmap, the company said, designing and developing the experience of users, distribution partners, content partners and advertisers. She will report to CEO Tom Ryan.
Reich will oversee and execute the programming strategy behind Pluto’s content, which includes more than 250 live and original channels. The company partners with TV networks, movie studios, publishers, and digital media companies, customizing their offerings via an editorial curation process. Viacom and CBS, naturally, have activated dozens of channels on Pluto, for example, but they don’t mirror what the companies offer their pay-TV distributors for contractual and strategic reasons.
Prior to her role with Eros, the force in streaming Bollywood fare which has just announced a merger with STX, Banerjee worked at social software firm Socialtext, Meevee, Ziff Davis Media and AOL.
“Shampa is a global product leader with deep experience in creating delightful experiences for consumers and rapid growth for the companies she helps lead ,” Ryan said. “We are excited to welcome her to Pluto TV as we continue our mission to entertain the planet.”
Reich, before his chapter at Fullscreen, held executive positions at Vevo, Fuse, Concert.TV and VH1. He started his career at Magus Entertainment, where he worked closely with the manager of the band Aerosmith.
“Scott’s diverse programming and management experience will be a great asset to Pluto TV,” Ryan said. “Pluto TV was created to solve the problem of what to watch. How, why and where we program our titles is what makes the Pluto experience one-of-a-kind, and it was important that we hired someone with experience in all aspects of content across all platforms.”
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