Fresh from exiting Off the Fence Bo Stehmeier has landed a job at fledgling digital production and distribution business Factory Media.
It emerged yesterday Stehmeier had left European distributor Off the Fence along with head of acquisitions Georgina Eyre. He has now joined Factory as director of rights and distribution.
Reporting to founder and managing director Darryl Newton, he will create a distribution unit at UK-based Factory, which has hired the likes of Jonathan Bates and Dee Smith as it pushes into multichannel sports and lifestyle content creation.
“My remit at Factory Media is to build a classic distribution operation – to appoint a sales team and manage a budget to acquire and finance programming. But that’s where the classic bit ends,” said Stehmeier.
“Factory Media has the resources, infrastructure, flexibility and multi-disciplined approach needed to control the entire distribution cycle, regardless of platform, format, brand and financial model. It is in my view what future content houses will be aspiring to be — and I’m helping to lead the way.”
Notably, Stehmeier and director of content Smith worked together at UK prodco Bullseye TV, which Zodiak Media acquired in 2007.
The pair will work closely together, along with commercial director Nick Bradley, to develop an international strategy for the firm’s content. Stehmeier, who was also head of sales at Optomen International, will also look after production finances for brands and exploit off-air opportunities.
Smith joined Factory earlier this year as the company repositioned as television and digital production outfit. It current produces and distributes content across 27 brands, and is gearing up for the launch of its first linear branded content commission, UKTV-owned Dave’s 12x30mins series The Unbreakables.
“We’ve gone through a massive realignment in the past year to make sure we’re match fit for the future,” said Factory boss Newton. “Such a huge shift requires a forensic commercial understanding of how best to structure new deals that reflect our rapidly evolving business, the changing consumer demand for content and how brands are attempting to get closer to that content.
“Bo is a huge character with past form in building extensive rights portfolios through development and acquisition for both international and domestic markets. His energy and expertise is just what we need at this pivotal point in our development.”