Germany’s Peppermint scored a film connection coup by hiring Daniel Otto, who will helm worldwide sales and acquisitions for the burgeoning company. Otto finished a four-year tenure as a high-profile feature film buyer at Kirch Group, to start anew with former colleague Michael Knobloch. ‘He’s a specialist in film, he has the contacts. . . it’s a perfect fit,’ says Peppermint’s managing director. In addition to worldwide acquisitions and sales (with concentration on acquisitions, says Otto), he will also be responsible for distributing Peppermint’s German catalog throughout German-speaking territories. The Asian market is an area that Peppermint has sought to take advantage of from the start, a trend both Knobloch and Otto recognized during their time at Kirch.
‘There are more than 10,000 hours of rights which we have trading in Asia,’ says Knobloch. ‘Our office is growing there,’ he continues, so Otto’s remit, although worldwide in scope, will focus heavily on Asia.
Essentially, he’s looking for the next big thing there. ‘What’s after Pokémon? No one knows, but I have a certain feeling for the Asian market and I think there is something there.’ He notes that the generation of viewers who like Pokémon and Sailor Moon are growing up, and thinks that by concentrating on the Asian market, he can look after their changing needs.
His departure from Kirch was amicable, it was just time for him to make a move. ‘The stuff I was getting good at was becoming of no use to the Kirch Group, [in terms of developing Asian contacts], and I knew Michael Knobloch and that he wanted to expand his feature film department,’ an area that Peppermint has done very little in since its inception last April. With that and Peppermint’s growth into the Asian market, Otto says he knew he could deliver.