Endemol Shine North America Reveals New Executive Structure; Ben Samek Named COO

Endemol Shine North America, the result of a joint venture uniting Endemol, Shine and Core Media and now the largest independent production and distribution group in the world, has announced its new executive management structure.

Ben Samek, who had been COO for Endemol North America, has been named chief operating officer for Endemol Shine North America, reporting to both Charlie Corwin and Cris Abrego, the co-chairmen and co-CEOs of the company.

Eden Gaha, who was previously president of unscripted television of Endemol Shine, will hold the same title for the venture, reporting to Abrego and Corwin.

Corwin and Abrego’s teams oversee a diverse programming lineup including “Big Brother” (CBS), “MasterChef” and “MasterChef Junior” (Fox), “The Biggest Loser” (NBC), “Hell on Wheels” (AMC), “Kingdom” (DirecTV), “Wipeout” (ABC) and the nationally syndicated “Steve Harvey.”

Endemol Shine North America subsidiary production companies include Authentic Entertainment (“Knife Fight,” “Flipping Out”), Original Media (“Ink Master,” “Swamp People”), True Entertainment (“The Real Housewives of Atlanta,” “Vanity Fair Confidential”) and 51 Minds Entertainment (“Below Deck,” “T.I. & Tiny: The Family Hustle”).

Also part of the Endemol Shine Group family in North America is Core Media Group, which has a separate capital structure and incorporates development and production operations including 19 Entertainment (“American Idol” and “So You Think You Can Dance”) and Sharp Entertainment (“Man v. Food” and “Property Wars”).

“Endemol Shine combines the creative spirit of independence with the global scale of a major studio. With a wide variety of hit formats and the top international sales operation in the world, our company is fast becoming the destination for innovative talent in scripted, unscripted and digital genres,” said Corwin and Abrego. “We are thrilled to announce the incredible new executive team in North America that will help lead our company into the future.”

Among the other executive changes:

Rob Smith, who has been executive vice president, creative affairs, has been promoted to exec VP, head of unscripted television, and will work alongside and report to Gaha.

Vivi Zigler, who was previously president, Shine 360° & Digital, Shine America, has been named president, digital, brand & audience development, Endemol Shine North America, and will report to Abrego and Corwin. Will Keenan will remain president, Endemol Beyond USA, and report to Zigler.

Carolyn G. Bernstein, exec VP, scripted programming, at Shine America, and Jeremy Gold, exec VP, creative affairs, Endemol Studios, will continue in their current roles in the newly merged Endemol Shine Studios. Both Bernstein and Gold will report to Corwin and Abrego.

Philippe Maigret had served as CEO of Endemol Studios since August 2011 is stepping down and transitioning into a consultancy role.

John Farrell will serve as general counsel for Endemol Shine North America. Farrell previously served in the same capacity at Endemol USA. Farrell will report to both Abrego and Corwin.

Paul Jennings, who has been Endemol North America’s chief financial officer, will serve in the same capacity for Endemol Shine North America, reporting to both Abrego and Corwin.

Joe Schlosser, who was previously senior vice president, communications at Shine America, has been named senior VP, communications, Endemol Shine North America, reporting to both Abrego and Corwin.

Denise Rodine, who joined Endemol North America this past year as VP of human resources, will continue in that role for Endemol Shine North America and report to Samek.

As previously announced, Core Media Group will continue to retain its own capital structure within the new joint venture, headed by Peter Hurwitz as president.

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