European broadcaster Modern Times Group has made Morten Aass president and CEO of its content group in a move that sees Patrick Svensk exiting.
Aass (left) takes on the Nice Entertainment Group top job having joined in September last year when MTG acquired Helsinki-based Nice, which comprises 15 production brands, distributor DRG and Modern Africa Productions.
Aass was CEO of Nice upon completion of the €84.4 million (US$115 million) deal, but became vice-chairman and CEO, branded/events, in March this year when the Nice brand replaced the MTG Studios moniker.
His promotion to chief exec means former Zodiak Entertainment M&A chief Svensk, who was Nice’s CEO and executive VP for content at MTG, is leaving.
Svensk has been with the company for the last two-and-a-half years, and was instrumental in bringing Nice into the MTG fold. He was oversaw the acquisition of Doc Martin distributor DRG last year.
He had started his career at MTG-owned TV3, and later joined MTV Produktion, which ultimately became Zodiak Television. He left that business two years after De Agostini acquired Zodiak to create a new global content group.
“Patrick started his career at MTG over 20 years ago and came back with a clear mandate to establish a much larger content footprint and capability,” said MTG CEO and president Jørgen Madsen Lindemann. “Taking our content division from six companies in five countries to 28 companies in 16 countries is quite an accomplishment, and we wish him all the best for the future.”
Aass, meanwhile, is joining MTG’s executive management team.
“The origination and delivery of high quality entertainment content is the very essence of our business, and the strong development of the Nice Entertainment Group of content businesses is a key driver of our future growth,” said Lindemann of the news.
“Nice operates with the ambition to serve all broadcasters and content aggregators in its markets with high quality products, and we have substantially scaled up our operations in this area over the past two years.
“Morten came on board at the end of last year after we bought Nice and has proven himself him an invaluable member of the management team. His appointment to this senior role will ensure that we build on this strong platform as one of the leading producers and distributors of world class entertainment.”
Before Nice, Aass previous was CEO of ProsiebenSat.1’s free TV channels in Norway, and was executive chairman of Norwegian communications agency Dinamo.