Paul Heaney, president and MD of distributor Cineflix Rights, is leaving the company after 10 years “to pursue new opportunities.”
Heaney will depart next month following a transitioning period. Chris Bonney, Cineflix Media’s CEO of rights, will cover the role in the interim while Cineflix decides how to replace Heaney’s role.
“Paul has been instrumental in leading Cineflix’s international distribution business from a start-up operation to an industry leader which has grown considerably in revenue and industry respect each year,” said Cineflix Media CEO Glen Salzman in a statement.
“We’re very sad to see Paul go and would like to thank him for his outstanding contribution to Cineflix and wish him all the best in his future endeavors.”
Heaney added: “It has been an incredibly tough decision but I feel that it’s the right time to pursue new opportunities and I’m looking forward to the challenges ahead.
“Cineflix has, without doubt, one of the best teams in the business and I’m extremely proud of what we accomplished together.”
Heaney had come to Cineflix in 2002 from BSkyB, where he served as commercial director for [.tv] The Technology Channel. Prior to that, he’d been with the factual division at Southern Star as head of sales.
Speaking to realscreen, Heaney said he’d been considering other possibilities for some time, and while he doesn’t have a next move immediately lined up, he has firm ideas about what it should entail, citing a multi-genre and multi-platform business model as key.
“I’m going to stay in rights exploitation but I want it to reflect what’s going on right now,” he said. “Broadcasters are looking at different methods and getting their [programs] funded through different means, so I want my next move to reflect that.
“Selling finished tape is probably going to be a diminishing percentage of revenues for a rights exploiter in the coming years,” he added. “For the bigger businesses it’s already a diminishing return. We have to look at how the younger demographic is actually consuming media – it’s not the way it was 10 years ago.”
Heaney also denied any speculation that Bonney’s appointment in October of last year played a significant factor in his decision to leave, saying both men had “complementary skills” and positions within the Cineflix group.
(With files from Barry Walsh)