ITV Studios has forged a Global Partnerships division combining formats and finished tape, helmed by the newly-promoted Ruth Berry, who detailed her new role, the Plimsoll acquisition and FAST opportunities.
Berry said the move to rebrand Global Distribution and Global Entertainment is “emblematic of the inspiration for us to partner in a broader, deeper way with more content across our portfolio.”
“There is a fair amount of overlap in our clients looking at both formats and scripted,” Berry told Mip TV.
“If we can bring that all together we can really focus these conversations and look at how we can leverage the breadth and scale of our portfolio with what our buyers need.”
Berry, who now oversees a 90,000-strong catalog with more than 250 formats, took on the newly combined finished tape/formats role late last year, at which point Arjan Pomper departed the business. Soon after, former Film and TV Charity CEO Alex Pumfrey joined ITV to head up partnerships with broadcasters, streamers and telecoms giants.
Berry talked up the ways in which the outfit is extending brands such as Love Island, I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! And The Voice across different platforms, a theme of media vet Evan Shapiro’s keynote yesterday.
ITV Studios has forged an I’m a Celebrity Bushtucker Trial on Fortnite and a metaverse experience version of The Voice, while it is thinking about “how we can take natural history brands to different places” since the $125M acquisition of Tiny World indie Plimsoll Productions.
“Natural history can be quite a closed genre so this is a brilliant opportunity for us to enter the space and it has gone from strength to strength,” added Berry.
With that acquisition in mind, Plimsoll CEO Grant Mansfield told the Mip TV session that the outfit has two international projects of scale for ITV “coming down the line.”
In common with one of Mip TV’s major themes, Berry also talked up ITV Studios’ position in the FAST and AVoD space, which she described as a “really interesting world,” pointing to new channels for shows like Come Dine with Me, Hell’s Kitchen and River Monsters.
She said the distributor’s new ability to harvest viewer data has “opened a pandora’s box” and is influencing business decisions.