Roku has a new leader for its media business, nabbing current Fox Entertainment Group Charlie Collier to head up the unit as president.
Collier will step into his new role at Roku Media effective late October, based in New York. Roku said Collier, who has over 25 years of experience in media business leadership, will bolster the company’s commitment to serving advertisers, content partners and consumers across its streaming platform. He’s tasked with overseeing the growth of Roku Media globally, including ad sales and Roku’s ad platform business, along with content for Roku’s owned and operated channels – notably The Roku Channel.
The appointment comes at a time when Roku wants to beef up its ad-supported business on the streaming platform.
“There is a tremendous opportunity to further accelerate and evolve Roku’s business as the streaming platform built for advertising, and Charlie is the ideal person to help us capitalize on the moment,” said Roku CEO and founder Anthony Wood in a statement. “He is a proven leader who brings vast experience, a history of evolving businesses, strong creative instincts, talent relationships, and a track record of driving revenue and growth. He will play an integral role in helping us achieve even greater success as a next-generation media company.”
While at Fox Collier was responsible for the overall business at Fox Entertainment, leading the Fox network, Fox Alternative Entertainment and Fox Entertainment Studios. Separately, Fox Entertainment this week announced that it’s re-entering the international distribution business with the launch of its new Fox Entertainment Global sales unit.
As for Collier, he’ll bring Roku experience in the ad-supported direct-to-consumer streaming space, as he contributed to growing Fox’s Tubi free ad-supported streaming TV (FAST) service, boosting its profile and increasing the AVOD services original content offering. Before Fox, Collier held roles at several media companies, including AMC Network, where he was president and general manager of AMC, Sundance TV, and AMC Studios, in charge of the creative and business operation of all three divisions. He also held positions at Court TV, Oxygen and A&E Networks.
Roku noted that while he was at Fox and AMC, both networks saw increases in ad revenue and ratings, Emmy Award-winning programming and growth of their digital platforms.
Commercial strategy will also be part of Collier’s role, where he’ll collaborate with Tedd Cittadine, VP of Content partnerships, who leads Roku’s relationships with third-party apps and streaming services, and Gil Fuchsberg, SVP of Corporate Development & Strategic Partnerships.
In the announcement about his appointment, Collier pointed to his past experience working with Roku as a partner.
“As a partner of Roku, I’ve seen firsthand the power and potential the platform provides advertisers, partners, content creators, and consumers,” he stated. “I’m eager to work with Roku’s talented team to continue to innovate, grow, and bring the company and its partners to the next level.”
And Collier isn’t the only personnel change for Roku, which is also elevating two senior executives to lead devices and consumer business units. Current SVPs of their respective units, Mustafa Ozgen will now serve as president of the device business, while Gidon Katz has been promoted to president of consumer experience.
Katz joined Roku earlier this year from NBCUniversal, where he was president of direct-to-consumer and helped launched streaming service Peacock in the U.S. Ozgen has been with Roku since 2019, overseeing programs like Roku TV, Roku Players, and Roku Ready soundbars. Prior to that, Ozgen served as chief executive of SmartKem, a maker of semiconductors used in flexible displays. Collier, Ozgen and Katz will report to Wood.
“As Roku grows internationally, these positions will help bring more focus to key areas of our business as the global shift to streaming continues,” Wood stated. “Charlie, Mustafa, and Gidon bring extensive industry knowledge and leadership experience to Roku. I look forward to working with them and their teams as we continue to innovate and build our position as the #1 TV streaming platform in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico and our overall global footprint.”
Roku recently revealed upcoming interface changes to Roku players that aim to address the abundance of content available on streaming and lower the mental effort it takes for viewers to pick what they want to watch. The news followed second-quarter earnings in July that missed expectations. Roku added 1.8 million incremental active accounts in the period to reach 63.1 million. However, lower advertising revenue weighed on results, and Roku reported a net loss of $112 million.