The role effectively centralizes CNN’s management and strategy of its commercial activity in one operation. The network has said it will also “create a more integrated, agile and global approach” to the way it assesses market needs, develops solutions and works with partners.
Raad — who has been leading CNN’s business operations outside the U.S. — will work closely with parent group WarnerMedia’s sales and international teams on its CNN advertising and distribution activity; lead international business through CNN International Commercial; optimize CNN Worldwide’s directly controlled revenue operations; and maximize the commercial potential of development of new products.
Raad started his career at CNN in New York before holding a number of senior international roles with CNN and WarnerMedia. In 2013, Raad combined all business operations of CNN’s properties outside of the U.S. within CNN International Commercial (CNNIC), for which he has served as president.
Raad reports directly into Jeff Zucker, chairman of WarnerMedia News and Sports, and president of CNN Worldwide.
Zucker said, “There has never been a more important time to be strategic and purposeful about revenue generation across the platforms of CNN Worldwide.
“By aligning Rani and his team more closely with the rest of the CNN organization, there is no doubt it will make a big difference in our ability to find new ways of doing business and enhanced opportunities for our clients around the world.”
Raad added, “I don’t think I have ever seen a time when CNN has been so influential, both in the U.S. and internationally. An era of structural change in the media market, the increased demand for verified news and the economic impact of COVID-19 is fundamentally changing the way we need to work with our business partners. With our premium brand, sophisticated solutions and worldwide reach, it’s now more important than ever before that our business partners, wherever they are, have greater and faster access to CNN’s full suite of global capabilities.”