Exclusive: Beyond Rights acquisitions chief Jimmy Humphrey steps down

Jimmy Humphrey

Beyond Rights head of acquisitions & co-productions Jimmy Humphrey is leaving the Australia- and UK-based distributor, TBI has learned.

Humphrey was appointed to Beyond’s new-look sales division in September following an extensive restructuring of its operations, which came after the acquisition of TCB Media Rights from the now defunct Kew Media Group earlier this year.

He had previously held the same role at TCB and before that headed up acquisitions at Passion Distribution, which he joined from Banijay in 2016 after its merger with Zodiak Media.

Humphrey joined Banijay International in 2013 from Endemol Shine Group predecessor Shine, where he held an acquisitions role. He has also worked at FremantleMedia.

Reshuffle & departures

He becomes the latest exec to depart the distributor in recent months, after a restructuring process that saw former TCB exec Hannah Demidowicz leave alongside Beyond’s long-standing head of sales Munia Kanna-Konsek, and others.

Beyond, which is in the process of appointing a replacement, hired TCB’s former MD Kate Llewellyn-Jones in July to the newly created role of CEO at Beyond Rights, incorporating Beyond Distribution and TCB teams based out of London, Ireland and Sydney.

She told TBI: “Jimmy is a leading light in the acquisitions world and a respected and extremely popular member of the team. While I understand his decision, I am very sorry to see him go. He has proved a great support over my first two months as CEO, but we will honour his hard work and sizeable contribution by continuing to do the very best for all the producer partners – and their incredible content – that he has helped bring to the Beyond Rights business.”

Kate Llewellyn-Jones

Humphrey, whose next move is not yet known, added: “With Covid-19, the acquisition of TCB Media Rights and the subsequent merger into Beyond Rights, 2020 has been a somewhat unsettling year.

“It had been on my mind for a while to take a break, however, I wanted to wait until the merger was complete, the two acquisitions teams had come together, and Kate had got everything else in place for the business going forward. The timing now feels right for me to think about what’s next.

“Kate has got a brilliant team around her and Beyond Rights is a great company, well-placed to do exciting things in the future. I will follow its progress with keen interest.”

Beyond’s acquisition of TCB – which was opposed by its founder Paul Heaney – has seen the company’s catalogue expand to more than 7,500 hours covering unscripted, drama and documentaries, as well as feature films, children’s programmes and formats. Key titles in include Love It Or List It, Mythbusters, Abandoned Engineering, Underground Worlds and Border Patrol.

Heaney and the UK-based distributor’s exec director Dina Subhani left the company this summer, following its acquisition by Beyond, and have since launched financier and distributor Bossanova.

In July, Beyond continued its expansion by striking a deal to acquire Seven Studios UK (SSUK) from Seven West Media (SWM). Beyond has also acquired the remaining 50.98% of shares in LA-based 7Beyond Media Rights (7Beyond) that it did not previously own from Seven Network.

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