Canada’s Corus Entertainment has marked the closing of its deal to acquire the assets of Shaw Media with a new logo and executive team.
The acquisition of Shaw Media’s assets nearly doubles Corus’ size, creating a combined portfolio of brands that includes 45 specialty channels, 15 conventional channels, 39 radio stations and a growing portfolio of digital assets.
Executives leaving the company include Christine Shipton, who had worked as chief content officer at Shaw Media. She will stay on with the company in the coming months to ensure a smooth transition.
The new leadership team includes Barbara Williams, who becomes EVP and COO at Corus Entertainment, overseeing strategic and operational aspects of generating audience growth across platforms, including Nelvana and Digital. Williams had worked as EVP of broadcasting and president of Shaw Media since September 2014.
Reporting to Williams will be Scott Dyer, who is SVP and president of Nelvana, Daniel Eves, SVP of kids and general entertainment content, Maria Hale, SVP of global entertainment and acquisitions, and Susan Schaefer, SVP of brands and marketing.
Colin Bohm becomes EVP of international development and corporate strategy at Corus Entertainment, where he will manage the company’s business development and strategic planning.
Bohm most recently worked as head of the kids division at Corus – a role he stepped into last August as part of continued corporate re-shuffles that culminated in former ABC kids boss Deirdre Brennan joining the company last week as VP of content at Corus Kids. Brennan’s new role has her overseeing all content aspects of the media conglomerate’s eight Canadian children’s channels─YTV, Treehouse, Nickelodeon, Teletoon, Cartoon Network, Disney Channel, Disney Junior and Disney XD─while also leading original programming, acquisitions and scheduling teams. She will also develop, manage and execute the entire Corus Kids slate of programming.
Other staffing changes to come out of the Shaw Media deal include Greg McLelland becoming EVP and CRO at Corus Entertainment, where he will lead the revenue components of the business across all platforms. McLelland had been SVP of sales at Shaw Media. Tom Peddie will continue to oversee Corus’ corporate finance, tax, treasury and accounting functions in the role of EVP and CFO.
Gary Maavara is Corus’ EVP and general counsel, overseeing the company’s legal matters. He will also continue in his role as corporate secretary to the board of directors.
Cheryl Fullerton becomes EVP of people and communications. She has worked as EVP of people at Corus Entertainment since last November. She will now also oversee the communications team at the company, which will be led by Dervla Kelly, who joins as VP of communications from Shaw Media.
Corus Entertainment first announced its proposal to acquire Shaw Media in January of this year, with the CRTC approving the deal last week. Corus shareholders voted to approve the deal earlier this month, with almost 80% of the votes in favour of the acquisition, despite a persistent campaign against the deal by activist investor Catalyst Capital Group.
With files from Julianna Cummins, Sonya Fatah and Wendy Goldman Getzler