VIMN hires Disney UK & Ireland director for kids

Viacom International Media Networks (VIMN) has appointed Disney’s UK & Ireland programming director Louise Bucknole to lead on kids programming.

Bucknole has been hired in the newly created role of VP of programming for VIMN Kids.

She will be tasked with driving ratings performance and brand strength for the Nickelodeon channels and Milkshake! on Channel 5.

In her Milkshake! role Bucknole will also have a business development remit to work with commercial, consumer products and events teams to expand the brand in addition to her responsibility to source for development commissioned and acquired content.

She will report to Alison Bakunowich, SVP and general manager at Nickelodeon UK and Milkshake!. Bucknole will also have a secondary reporting line into Ben Frow, director of programs Channel 5.

At Disney Channels UK & Ireland, Bucknole was responsible for leading all strategic, editorial, commercial and operational aspects of content strategy.

She commissioned Goalmouth, First Class Chefs, Art Attack, Furry Friends and Access All Areas among others.

Prior to her six year stint at Disney, Bucknole worked as head of scheduling, BBC Children’s where she oversaw content strategy for CBBC, CBeebies, the children’s blocks on BBC One, BBC Two and iPlayer.

“Louise has an incredible wealth of experience in the children’s television industry across both the PSB and pay TV sectors and her expertise in scheduling and channel planning will help us to further drive ratings improvement for both Nickelodeon and Milkshake!,” said Bakunowich.

Bucknole added: “I am delighted to be joining Viacom International Media Networks where I will work across both the Nickelodeon and Milkshake! brands to bring much loved content to kids to excite, inspire and entertain them. This brings together my twenty years content and broadcasting experience across the commercial and PSB kids sectors and I can’t wait to join this brilliant team.”

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