Fremantle Kicks Off 2019 With Exec Alignment
Coming off a banner 2018 with increased revenues, two Daytime Emmy Award wins (The Price Is Right and Let’s Make A Deal), America’s Got Talent holding its position as the No. 1 show of the summer for its 13th straight season, and the historic revival of American Idol on its new home on ABC, Fremantle is heading into 2019 with a revamped executive team to support the company’s North American operations.
Under the leadership of Jennifer Mullin, who this past summer took on the role of global CEO while continuing to serve as CEO of North America, the company has implemented a structural shift.
“At a time of exciting growth and ambition for Fremantle’s U.S. business, I’m delighted to have further strengthened our top team, combining first-class talent from outside Fremantle with outstanding colleagues from within,” Mullin said.
Effective immediately, Suzanne Lopez has been elevated to the role of COO for North America. Lopez has been with Fremantle for 15 years and has served as the company’s EVP of business and legal affairs for the last nine years. In her new role as COO, she will have oversight of all legal and business affairs, HR, production, technology and security.
Moving into the role of EVP of business and legal affairs for the company’s unscripted projects will be Tim Grau. Grau is coming up on his 12th anniversary with the company, having served in numerous roles within the business affairs division, most recently as the company’s SVP of commercial partnerships and business affairs. In his new role, Grau will oversee the negotiations of all deals surrounding the development, acquisition, production and distribution of the Fremantle unscripted division, as well as all production legal affairs.
On the production side of the business, Dan Funk has been named Fremantle’s new EVP of unscripted production. Funk has been in the Fremantle family for the past 15 years, having most recently served as an executive producer on the Daytime Emmy-winning Let’s Make A Deal throughout all 10 seasons. He has been a member of the Directors Guild of America for 35 years and has created hundreds of hours of programs across a variety of genres that have resulted in multiple Emmy nominations. Funk will oversee all aspects of Fremantle’s unscripted production in North America.
Joining Fremantle, Meredith Berens has accepted the role of SVP of human resources. Berens has more than a decade of industry experience and previously served as the head of international HR for DreamWorks Animation, in addition to positions at G4 and E! networks. In this role, Berens will oversee the development, implementation and management of all HR strategies and programs to include talent acquisition, compliance, benefits, employee relations, and training and development.