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The Orchard has turned to Paul Davidson to help the company grow its film and television distribution business.

Davidson, a former executive at Microsoft’s Xbox division as well as with traditional Hollywood ventures such as New Line Cinema, Fox, ABC, MTV and the Jim Henson Co., has joined the Orchard as senior VP.

Davidson will use his experience in distribution, development, production, marketing and film acquisition to expand the company’s film and TV distribution efforts from its offices in New York and Los Angeles.

Davidson most recently led the Xbox Video service, overseeing the financial and operational strategy of the service, growing the business across game consoles, on Windows devices and across the Web. The role included supervising the global EST and VOD business for studios, networks and content aggregators.

“We’ve organically built our team with an eye towards market trends and verticals with a rapidly growing digital audience; our team’s talent and tenacity is why we have clients such as Scholastic Media, the tentpole of our rapidly growing children’s category, and recent film acquisitions such as Sundance Jury Prize winner ‘Rich Hill’ and Tribeca Film Festival’s top horror film ‘The Canal,’” said Brad Navin, CEO of the Orchard. “Now, as the shift towards digital accelerates, Paul’s diverse experience and business acumen make him the right person to guide our strategy and lead our team.”

The Orchard already has digitally distributing video for clients over the past six years. It started with a focus on music and operates a multichannel network online in more than 25 markets around the globe.

“The Orchard has made major headway building the foundation as an innovative, forward-thinking distribution business,” Davidson said. “I’m excited to combine my passion for entertainment and experience in the digital space with the company’s agile and progressive approach to nurturing partnerships with today’s top content creators. These guys get what it takes to be the best and are willing to do the work to get there.”

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