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Director Programming & Acquisitions, Disney+, Benelux

Apply NowApply Later Job ID 889699BR Location Amsterdam, North Holland, Netherlands Business Disney Media & Entertainment Distribution Date posted Nov. 19, 2021

Job Summary:

The Walt Disney Company
The Walt Disney Company has been at the forefront of family entertainment in Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) for over 80 years and is dedicated to creating innovative entertainment experiences for children and families. It operates businesses across 47 markets and has a physical presence in 23 countries’ employing more than 6,300 people (excluding Disneyland Paris); its channels reach children and families in 117 countries.

The Disney brand is experienced in a number of ways across the region including in cinemas, on TV screens with Disney-branded channels as well as non-branded content, through a wide range of consumer products that are sold at mass market retailers and in Disney Stores across the region. The Disney brand is also experienced at Europe’s #1 tourist destination, Disneyland Paris, which opened in 1992.

Disney+ is The Walt Disney Company’s new Direct to Consumer (DTC) video entertainment service targeted to families and fans of our iconic content and brands. The service consists of long form and short form video built around six key content brands (Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars National Geographic and Star), with an appealing and easy to use interface accessed across multiple platforms including TVs, mobile devices, and gaming consoles.

The launch of the Star brand in February 2021 further expanded our DTC business in EMEA to include a new general entertainment offering. Star features a wide range of exclusive new original and library TV series and movies from our portfolio of studios including ABC Studios, Fox Television, FX, Freeform, 20th Century Studios and Searchlight, as well as local acquisitions and forthcoming local original series.

The DTC EMEA team is responsible for the overall commercial performance and the day-to-day operations of the DTC business across the region. This includes programming strategy & scheduling, marketing, customer acquisition and retention, partnerships, customer engagement, and analytics and research.

In conjunction with the regional Disney+ content team, the Director Programming & Acquisitions will lead and adapt and localize the content strategy for the Benelux.

Job summary
Within the local Benelux team the Director Programming & Acquisitions will be responsible for shaping the overall strategy for Benelux DTC content offering and programming, to drive maximum subscriber acquisition, engagement and retention. This role will help build a strong data-led approach to our content prioritisation, planning, acquisition and production strategies. The role will work closely with the EMEA content genre leads (Disney Channel, National Geographic, ESPN) and regional programming, acquisitions, operations and research and analytical teams.

The Director Programming & Acquisitions will be the point person for negotiating commercial deals with external content suppliers in relation to DTC Acquisitions in Benelux. This will include leading and supporting negotiations with licensors for their original productions and content distributed by them on behalf of production companies, with an emphasis on negotiation applying best practice and in alignment with The Walt Disney Company worldwide.

The successful candidate will creating a framework for deals that are competitive, agile and adhere to the Disney brand values as well as liaising between distributors and Disney’s internal teams on locally and internationally produced and licensed content. This will involve amongst other things negotiating licensing and pre-acquisition deals, signing off commercial/business terms and coordinating information flow and exchange with adjacent departments, such as Finance, Legal Affairs, Marketing etc.

Finally, this role will provide key support on fulfilling company standard deal key terms and policies in licensing and pre-acquisition deals in order to guarantee consistent conditions in the content business.


  • Tailor the global content offer by market, based on parameters such as rights, windowing restrictions, availability, European quota restrictions, competitive context, regulatory restrictions, market preferences, research, viewing analysis, etc.
  • Set programming priorities, planning and calendar of priorities that feed and drive subscriber acquisition, retention and marketing/creative strategy and planning
  • Drive editorial merchandising and promotion strategies
  • Create high impact, curated programming events that leverage The Walt Disney Company brands and franchises.
  • Oversight of general audience content programming for original and catalogue movie, series, and short form content for Disney+
  • Oversee day to day editorial operations, including creating and updating pages, content calendars, schedules, analytics
  • Leverage market and behaviour data, audience research to drive data and analytics that determine effective programming strategies
  • Management of service content catalogue to ensure Disney+ meets all regulations including European quotas
  • Clear and effective briefing of marketing/creative teams on content plan and priorities.
  • Work in close collaboration with the Disney+ regional content teams based in London, ensuring an aligned approach
  • Partner with the other Disney+ Europe functional leads and support the wider business objectives
  • Partner with franchise and IP teams to support priority content campaigns
  • Partner with programming data and insights to take action on findings
  • Identify general audience programming gaps and audience segment opportunities
  • Success will be measured by subscriber engagement, ratings/views, subscriber growth and profitability as well as the ability to lead the team effectively, work collaboratively across functions/divisions and build healthy relationships with key external partners.

  • Manages negotiations with distributors and their relevant legal and business affairs departments involved in deal making to close deals on time, on budget and within company standards and deal parameters.
  • Creates and revises deal templates for all types of deal making for licensing and pre-acquisitions.
  • Manages exchange with international Legal Affairs teams – including ongoing development of best practise and setting acceptable precedents.
  • Ability to read, interpret and provide solutions on contract drafts, and sync with Finance and Legal Affairs.
  • Ability to read, understand & consult on budgets.
  • Vets acquisition processes and handles deal approvals.
  • Supervises progress on multiple deal negotiations on and off system (incl. deal trackers).
  • Coordinates cost allocation reviews with Finance and VP Programming Disney+ EMEA.
  • Consults with Acquisitions, Legal Affairs within and outside EMEA to facilitate Acquisition, Legal Affairs needs with contracts and approval issues.
  • Attends and presents at Programming, Finance and Legal meetings and markets.
  • Understands the roles and interdependencies of Marketing, Research, Legal Affairs, etc. and develops the relationships within these departments to assure high quality and efficiency.
Areas of Accountability (KPI’s)
  • Programming & Acquisitions budget
  • Accountable for negotiating licensing and pre-acquisition deals, complete and quality delivery of all relevant paperwork in collaboration with local, EMEA and global Legal Affairs and Acquisitions and other relevant programming stakeholders
  • Accountable for timely delivery of all necessary paperwork for deals.
  • Represents Disney licensing contract standards; earns and builds respect from distributors and studios worldwide.
  • Coordinates, guides, advices and supports all relevant local teams based in EMEA markets involved in the licensing and pre-acquisition of third party content on their negotiations, deal assessment and builds with them a local best practice/framework.
  • Meet subscriber acquisition, engagement and retention targets

Basic Qualifications:

  • Proven experience in an Executive level media Video Content/Programming role, ideally with SVOD/ Streaming experience and or Pay TV.
  • Track record of selecting content for a service, planning/programming the service and using data to guide/adjust editorial strategy
  • Balanced creative and analytical thinker with ability to leverage data to drive strategy/decisions as well as view and understand content editorially
  • Budget management experience and P&L understanding
  • Understanding of the acquisitions process
  • Ability to critically assess content, anticipate performance potentials, provide deal solutions and promptly supervise the execution of new measures.
  • Exceptionally organised and great attention to detail: ability to evaluate licensing and pre-acquisition proposals and cost impact.
  • Excellent negotiation skills, especially in resolving deal making problems with distributors, and maintaining Disney’s priority requirement in each production
  • Strong ability to multi-task and prioritise; and always ‘stay ahead of the game’.
  • Flexible and result-oriented: not afraid to challenge the status quo; and pro-active to suggest new approach. Always ready to ‘go the extra mile’.
  • Ability to demonstrate strategic thinking and clarity of communications
  • Strong relationship building & presentation skills
  • Ability to manage and motivate staff
  • Drives Results
  • Inspires Creativity and Innovation
  • Champions Change
  • Builds Teams
  • Demonstrates Professional Excellence

Additional Information:

Applications for this position will close on Friday, 3rd December.

About Disney Media & Entertainment Distribution:

Comprised of the Company’s international business units and various direct-to-consumer streaming services, Disney Media & Entertainment Distribution (DMED) aligns technology, media distribution and advertising sales into a single business segment to create and deliver personalized entertainment experiences to consumers around the world.

About The Walt Disney Company:

The Walt Disney Company, together with its subsidiaries and affiliates, is a leading diversified international family entertainment and media enterprise with the following business segments: media networks, parks and resorts, studio entertainment, consumer products and interactive media. From humble beginnings as a cartoon studio in the 1920s to its preeminent name in the entertainment industry today, Disney proudly continues its legacy of creating world-class stories and experiences for every member of the family. Disney’s stories, characters and experiences reach consumers and guests from every corner of the globe. With operations in more than 40 countries, our employees and cast members work together to create entertainment experiences that are both universally and locally cherished.

This position is with The Walt Disney Company Ltd., which is part of a business segment we call Disney Media & Entertainment Distribution.

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