BBC sets up French production arm

Jean-Louis Blot to lead Paris team

BBC Worldwide, the pubcaster’s commercial arm that last week announced record profits, will open a French production HQ in Paris.

The move is part of BBC Worldwide’s strategy to beef up its Gallic format biz and furthers its aim of setting up a network of production offices across the world. It already has bases in Los Angeles, New York, Mumbai, Toronto and Sydney.

BBC Worldwide Prods. France will be run by Jean-Louis Blot, who will report to director of international formats Colin Jarvis.

“France is a key market for us,” Jarvis said. “Through the success of our sales and distribution office, BBC Worldwide enjoys a strong relationship with all of the major broadcasters in France, and we look forward to extending this to local production.”

BBC Worldwide has licensed such U.K. formats as “The Weakest Link,” “Top of the Pops” and “The Office” in France.

Blot joins BBC Worldwide Prods. France from Air Prods., where he was head of development and a producer.

At the French shingle, he made gameshows “Don’t Forget the Lyrics” and “Tout le monde veut prendre sa place” for pubcaster web France 2.

Previously, Blot worked as a producer for API Prods. and Taxi Prods. and as head of programs and content for auFeminin.com Group.

He will be supported by Cecile Lamarque, late of FremantleMedia, who joins as development executive and will oversee production.

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