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Fox Networks Group’s Prentiss Fraser Exits Following Disney-Fox Deal (EXCLUSIVE)

Prentiss Fraser, who headed up the U.K.-based Fox Networks Group Content Distribution business, has left in the wake of the Disney-Fox deal.

Fraser was pink-slipped as part of the first wave of layoffs following completion of the Disney-Fox merger last month. Her departure from Fox’s London-based global TV distribution unit is the first of note in Europe as as result of the deal.

Fox and Disney both have sizable Europe-based operations, but no wholesale management changes have yet taken place in the U.K. In the U.S., a number of senior Fox executives have already been laid off. In Asia, by contrast, Disney unveiled a restructuring Monday that keeps many Fox executives in place.

Insiders on the TV side at Fox expect there to be more moves after the L.A. Screenings in May but have been told it is business as usual until then. Fraser’s exit is the only major departure thus far in the FNGCD headquarters, sources said.

Buying Fox assets added multiple TV content sales units to the Disney fold. Twentieth Century Fox TV Distribution chief Mark Kaner was one of the execs to go in the initial wave of job cuts in the U.S. The TCFTVD division sells content from the Fox network and its production units to broadcasters, meaning heavy overlap with Disney’s existing distribution business.

Fraser reported into the TCFTVD side of the business – specifically to Gina Brogi, who at present is still in her position as president of global distribution. Fraser joined Fox from eOne in 2014, was elevated to executive vice president and managing director of Fox Networks Group Content Distribution in 2016, and grew the unit to 60 people. FNGCD sells content from National Geographic and other Fox-owned cable networks to international buyers.

A source close to the situation told Variety that, post-merger, Disney is not looking to have any positions with global responsibilities to be based in London – hence Fraser’s exit. Disney declined to comment.

In recent times Fraser and FNGCD have overseen the sales of FNG’s first original drama, “Deep State,” which is about to enter its second season. It also handles sales of “The Walking Dead” in certain territories. The catalogue runs to almost 20,000 hours.

The Disney and Fox Network Group offices are located in the same west London neighborhood of Hammersmith. Disney EMEA chief Rebecca Campbell is understood to have made the short walk to the Fox offices to talk to staff new to the Disney fold.

Disney, through buying a raft of Fox assets, is also now a shareholder in the Endemol Shine Group, a major force in TV production and distribution. Having previously stalled, sales talks with Banijay are back under way. Neither FNGCD or Endemol will be at MipTV in Cannes, the first major international sales market of the year.

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