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Passion sales chief resurfaces at DRG

Elin Thomas has joined UK-based distributor DRG just days after her exit from Passion Distribution was announced.

Elin ThomasShe has taken on a newly-created post as executive VP of sales at the Modern Times Group-owned company, with former Arte France sales manager Emilie Klienmann also joining.

At DRG, she will oversee the sales operation, reporting to managing director Richard Halliwell. She’ll also the UK territory on a day-to-day basis, as well as relationships with key clients.

The move comes as part of an internal rejig, with DRG senior VPs Joel Atley and Scott Kirkpatrick taking on new responsibilities. Atley will add northern, central and eastern Europe along with Asia Pacific, while Kirkpatrick now oversees western Europe and North and South America.

Both now report to Thomas, who will oversee a team that also includes Jo Halstead and Amity Easter Utley, who joined in November last year, and Klienmann, is relocating to London to become senior sales manager for France and Germany.

Thomas’ exit from Passion, where she was director of global sales, was announced on Friday, with Nick Tanner promoted to replace her.

“Elin is one of the most experienced and professional senior executives working in distribution today, so we are very excited to welcome her to the team,” said Halliwell.

“A flatter, more regionally based team structure has served us well over the past few years, with revenue growing dramatically, but in order for this to continue we needed to evolve our approach to sales and reflect the current direction of our expanding business.

“It will always be vital to retain specific territory knowledge – and that is why we have employed an expert such as Emilie – but now with more global operators, and a rapidly changing marketplace, we needed a team head who could look more strategically and holistically at the opportunities for our content – and thereby our producer clients – and ensure that we are always in a position to fully maximise revenues and effectively grow programme brands.”

Thomas was formerly BBC Worldwide’s director of global formats, during which time Halliwell was commercial director at the BBC’s money-making arm.