Banijay UK has tapped industry veteran Sandra Smith for the newly-created role of director of production, with a focus on the unscripted side of the business.
In her new role, Smith will report jointly to Banijay CFO Derek O’Gara and Bella Lambourne, director of HR and operations, and will be part of the senior management team for Banijay’s UK group. She will take up the position immediately.
Smith’s duties will include ensuring consistent and best working practices across the group. She will also take up head of production responsibilities for Banijay UK’s smaller labels and provide support across the group’s production management teams, working on production procurement alongside Louisa Lockett, head of operations and projects, as well as talent sourcing.
Smith joins Banijay from Initial, where she’s director of production, a position she’s held since 2016. Prior to that she was head of production at Initial, where she worked on the likes of Big Brother, Wipeout and more.
“Sandra is a hugely experienced Director of Production with an encyclopedic knowledge of the industry. Working alongside production management teams in the business she will ensure that our working practices are the best they can be and are consistent across the group,” O’Gara and Lambourne said jointly in a release.
As Smith assumes her new role, Jody Collins will be promoted to head of production for Initial, where she’ll oversee Initial’s production slate and work closely with managing directors Catherine Lynch and Katy Manley on business strategy.