Following news that Warner Bros President and Managing Director UK, Ireland, Spain Josh Berger is stepping down, WarnerMedia has promoted Polly Cochrane to Country Manager for UK and Ireland. She will oversee all commercial and group marketing activities in the region and will report directly to Priya Dogra, head of WarnerMedia EMEA & Asia (excluding China).
Cochrane has been with WarnerMedia for 11 years and most recently served as Executive Vice President and Group Marketing Director, Warner Bros UK and Ireland, and Chief Marketing Officer, Harry Potter Global Franchise Development.
Said Dogra, “I’m delighted to welcome Polly to my leadership team. Polly brings a strong and inclusive leadership style, combined with a proven innovative approach to driving our beloved brands and franchises. As she takes on this broader set of responsibilities, our business will benefit from her wealth of experience in the UK media sector. I’m looking forward to tapping into the fresh thinking she will bring to the table.”
As a Country Manager, Cochrane is responsible for the development and execution of WarnerMedia’s strategy in the UK and Ireland and will coordinate and optimize all commercial and group marketing activities in the region. This will include theatrical distribution, content licensing, home entertainment, consumer products, as well as ad sales and affiliate distribution for the WarnerMedia channels. She will work closely with functional leaders in the U.S. and across Europe.
Throughout Cochrane’s tenure at Warner Bros, she has overseen the development of an integrated marketing function within Warner Bros UK, spanning films, TV shows, video games and licensed products, delivering lifecycle marketing campaigns for the company’s properties. Cochrane joined Warner Bros in April 2009 as Vice President and Group Marketing Director, Warner Bros UK. She was previously Director of Marketing at Channel 4, where — during another 11 year tenure — she was responsible for the broadcaster’s award-winning on and off-air marketing, including a new brand identity for Channel 4 and the successful launches of More4, Film4 free to air, Channel 4+1 and 4oD. Prior to that, Cochrane was Head of Advertising and Promotions for the launch of Channel 5.
Cochrane’s colleagues on the WarnerMedia EMEA leadership team include recently promoted fellow country managers Iris Knobloch (France, Benelux, Germany, Austria and Switzerland), Barbara Salabè (Italy) and Pierre Branco (CEE, Nordics, the Middle East, Turkey and Africa) who is also head of affiliate and ad sales for EMEA.
Complementing the country manager structure are additional executive leadership colleagues, recently promoted heads of functions Hannes Heyelmann and Antony Root, who respectively lead the general entertainment programming and original production remits. Rounding out the team, Pedro Cosa continues to lead data and insights for networks; and Lesley Bailey and Cecilia Persson continue their leadership of the central EMEA kids and young adults team, with a dual report to Dogra and Tom Ascheim, President of kids, young adults and classics for WarnerMedia.
The reorganization follows the announcement in August that WarnerMedia was bringing the international operations of Warner Bros, HBO and Turner under one leadership for the first time, with Gerhard Zeiler, to whom Dogra reports, named as head of WarnerMedia International
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