Fullscreen, one of the largest YouTube multichannel networks, is expanding further into the branded entertainment arena, hiring Billy Parks and Bryan Thoensen to form a new strategic content group.
Parks, who recently worked with Fullscreen to produce “SnapperHero” for AT&T as the first episodic show built exclusively for Snapchat, was executive VP of digital production and programming for the Chernin Group, where he co-created and exec produced the digital series “@SummerBreak” and produced its second season while chief content officer of Judy McGrath’s Astronaut’s Wanted.
His credits also include Grace Helbig and Mamrie Hart’s travel series “HeyUSA,” and projects for Chrysler, P&G, Microsoft, Jay Z, Rihanna, Beyonce and Kanye West.
Thoensen previously served as director and head of brand content at Hulu, where he oversaw the creation and distribution of projects like Chipotle’s “Farmed & Dangerous” series, Windells Academy’s “My Side of the Sky,” “The High Road With Mario Batali,” and Subway’s “The 4 to 9ers.” Before that, he was VP in the brand marketing and digital divisions at the William Morris Agency, where he worked with Nestlé Purina, General Motors, Coca-Cola, Hilton Hotels, Hewlett-Packard and Best Buy.
Both Parks and Thoensen will serve as senior VPs at the company.
The two will leverage Fullscreen’s expertise in youth culture, and relationships with brands and distributors to produce multiplatform content experiences for partners, Fullscreen CEO George Strompolos said in a letter to employees on Wednesday.
“As I spend time with brand marketing leaders and our distribution platform partners, I have recognized the strong demand for premium, innovative content programs that require more immersive strategies and greater resources,” Strompolos wrote. “In response to the market demand, and to fulfill the needs of our partners, I am excited to announce that we’re expanding our content studio capabilities to develop comprehensive, high-touch programs with a select number of brands and platforms.”
The appointments come shortly after Fullscreen set up a national sales team in New York City, with Kevin McGurn appointed head of sales and Maureen Polo named general manager. McGurn also will also oversee sales for Fullscreen’s parent company, Otter Media, and its affiliated companies including Crunchyroll, SoompiTV and Creative Bug. He was chief revenue officer at Shazam Entertainment, while Polo was director of business development at Hearst Integrated Media.
“Today we reach a massive global audience that is increasingly uninterested in the one-size-fits-all traditional media channels of yesterday,” Strompolos wrote. “Through many successful integrated marketing and custom content campaigns, we have become a trusted partner for brands and partners seeking to engage with today’s youth in a way that is both authentic and effective.”