Exclusive: AMC-backed Shorts International names Arqiva alum as COO

Russ Armstrong

AMC Networks-backed TV and streaming outfit Shorts International has appointed Russ Armstrong, a former exec at telecoms firm Arqiva, as its COO.

Armstrong reports into Shorts International CEO Carter Pilcher and will be responsible for directing global operations at the company, which operates the ShortsTV channel and focuses on short-form content.

He will also lead strategy for the business’s technology, scheduling, production and video processing across its four global TV networks, as well as the roll-out of ShortsTV’s OTT offering and app developments in the coming months.

Armstrong, who will be based in London, was most recently a consultant to a number of start-ups as well as advising an OTT video analytics business. Before that, he was responsible for enabling UK broadcasters to add new digital channels on Freeview during his time at Arqiva, which he left in 2014.

“Russ brings a wealth of experience in TV and digital content provision,” said Pilcher. “We’re on a fast growth curve and are thrilled to have someone of Russ’ background on board to help us keep up with the growing global demand for short movies and short form content.”

Armstrong added: “I believe ShortsTV is a great business at an exciting inflection point. The growth potential in short form entertainment is abundantly clear, and as the pioneer in the space – and with its strong track record and multi-device and platform strategy – ShortsTV is very well-placed to seize this global opportunity.”

Shorts International has its main office in the UK, with Shorts Entertainment Networks, a wholly owned subsidiary, operating from LA. The company is majority owned by Shorts Entertainment Holdings, with AMC Networks described as “a significant minority shareholder”.


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