Underscoring the growing weight of the overseas homevid market, 20th Century Fox has appointed Keith Feldman to prexy of its Intl. Home Entertainment Division.
Feldman will report to Fox Home Entertainment worldwide prexy Mike Dunn, who said the newly created position recognizes the complexities of overseas markets and the vast expansion of distribution channels around the globe.
Just as the international B.O. has become a greater portion of each studio’s bottom line, so have foreign home entertainment sales. In his new gig, Feldman aims to expand the studio’s footprint.
Feldman was upped from g.m. and exec VP of Fox Home Entertainment Intl.
“The idea is to be more focused on the media landscape in each territory, since every territory has different delivery systems. It’s very complex,” Dunn said. “Keith is a highly respected and insightful executive who has a stellar record at Fox of driving our business overseas, even in the face of industry challenges.”
The global DVD business has taken a beating since the economic collapse in 2008, particularly in the U.S. However, there’s been notable growth in some foreign territories.
In 2009, 33% of international territories experienced either positive or flat DVD and Blu-ray revenue performance, led by Germany, Sweden, Switzerland and Australia.
Major markets seeing double-digit sales declines included the U.S., the U.K. and Japan, according to German research firm Media Control GfK.
Global homevid sales have improved slightly in the first half of 2010, thanks in large part to “Avatar,” with major Western European markets and Japan faring better than the U.S.
Sales were down 1.2% in those territories, compared to 3.3% in the U.S., according new reports from Media GfK and the U.S.-based Digital Entertainment Group.
Part of the reason is an explosion in the sale of Blu-ray titles overseas — up 107% in Japan and Western Europe.
Feldman’s role will be to further mine such opportunities. Dunn said it is critical to have executives in place who understand local markets and new technologies.
“Developing the international marketplace has always been a key strategic priority for Fox. This is a tremendous opportunity to reinforce that commitment and break new ground,” Feldman said.