Former BBC Exec Tapped as Eurosport Digital MD


LONDON: Discovery Communications has named former BBC executive Ralph Rivera as Eurosport Digital’s managing director, a newly created position that is effective September 26.

Rivera will work out of London under Michael Lang, the executive VP of international development and digital for Discovery Communications, and will collaborate with Peter Hutton, Eurosport’s CEO, and his leadership team. He is responsible for leading the expansion of Eurosport’s digital businesses, which include the Eurosport website and Eurosport Player OTT platform.

Rivera previously served as the director of BBC Digital, where he oversaw all of the BBC’s digital media services and led the implementation and operation of BBC iPlayer, among other accomplishments. Earlier in his career, he spent a decade working for AOL, most recently as senior VP and managing director of games.

Lang said: “Recognized as one of the most forward-thinking digital executives in the world, Ralph brings extensive knowledge in the direct-to-consumer space, with a deep understanding of the digital landscape in Europe and a strong reputation for innovation and transformation. His product-centric mindset and technology orientation will help us to grow Eurosport Digital, which is one of Discovery’s top priorities, as we continue our march to making sports and all of our content accessible to viewers across all screens, in a highly meaningful and profitable way.”

Hutton noted: “Eurosport is focused on the further acquisition and delivery of locally relevant, premium sports content that will continue to attract more subscribers to the Eurosport Player. We continue to build momentum through the recent acquisition of premium rights such as Wimbledon across Europe and the Bundesliga in Germany. As we plan the enhanced delivery of these acquisitions and take ownership of the Olympic Rings from January 1, 2017, as the official multiplatform broadcast rights holder for Europe through 2024, we look forward to having Ralph as part of the Eurosport team.”

Rivera added: “Having enjoyed numerous successes with the BBC, my next move had to be big. The opportunity I have in leading the digital business at Eurosport is an amazing challenge, and working closely with Discovery’s world-class teams at Eurosport and across local markets, I hope to build next-generation digital sports products, ensuring Eurosport consumers across Europe can enjoy more action, when and where they choose to view it.”