People/Biz

Banijay ups Cris Abrego to oversee Americas

Banijay has restructured its top line structure by handing Cris Abrego, former CEO of Endemol Shine North America, the reins to the media conglomerate’s operations throughout North America and Latin ...
November 19, 2020

Banijay has restructured its top line structure by handing Cris Abrego, former CEO of Endemol Shine North America, the reins to the media conglomerate’s operations throughout North America and Latin America.

Abrego (pictured) will now serve as chairman of the Americas for Banijay and president and CEO of Endemol Shine Holdings.

He reports into Banijay CEO Marco Bassetti.

Abrego will now have oversight of a portfolio of award-winning businesses, including Endemol Shine North America (ESNA), Bunim/Murray Productions, Authentic Entertainment, Truly Original, 51 Minds Entertainment, Stephen David Entertainment and YellowBird U.S.

Meanwhile in Latin America, Abrego will have full oversight of Banijay’s Spanish-language sales and development arm, Endemol Shine Latino, as well as the Mexico City-based studio Endemol Shine Boomdog and Sao Paulo’s Endemol Shine Brasil.

The companies under Abrego’s purview have been responsible for creating such unscripted hits as Big Brother (CBS), MasterChef (Fox), Lego Masters (Fox), The Real Housewives of Atlanta (Bravo), Keeping up with the Kardashians (E!), Ball in the Family (Facebook Watch), and MasterChef Mexico (TV Azteca), among others.

Banijay Studios North America will continue to be run independently by president and CEO, David Goldberg.

“Cris has long been a significant figurehead in the U.S. content ecosystem. Respected, creatively triumphant and a driver of positive change, he has all the qualities to strategically and effectively lead one of our largest territories,” said Bassetti in a statement. “With nine labels split across North and Latin America, spanning everything from entertainment to scripted, he has oversight of some of the region’s most celebrated IP and we’ve no doubt our pipeline and reputation will only soar under his leadership.”

Previously, Abrego served as CEO of Endemol Shine North America and was also chairman of Endemol Shine Americas. Prior to joining ESNA in 2014, he co-founded and was CEO of the Endemol Shine-backed studio 51 Minds Entertainment.

Most recently, he led the launch of production labels in both Brazil and Mexico for Endemol Shine, as well as a push into Spanish-language programming in the U.S. and across Latin America.  

“I am truly excited about this new role and the opportunity that it allows me and our team to continue building on the tremendous momentum we’ve created at Endemol Shine over the last five years across North America and Latin America,” added Abrego. “I’m also looking forward to working closely with Marco and our new Banijay colleagues here in the U.S. and around the globe. Together we are now home to many of the biggest titles in our industry and our teams are currently developing the hits of tomorrow.”

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