People/Biz

BBC Studios names Martyn Freeman as COO

BBC Studios has appointed Martyn Freeman as its new chief operating officer. Freeman is the current general counsel for BBC Studios, overseeing the company’s business and legal affairs, global operations, compliance ...
December 10, 2021

BBC Studios has appointed Martyn Freeman as its new chief operating officer.

Freeman is the current general counsel for BBC Studios, overseeing the company’s business and legal affairs, global operations, compliance and risk. His promotion will see him extend his remit to take over responsibility for technology, transformation and property.

Two months after his role as CEO of BBC Studios went from interim to permanent, Tom Fussell, in announcing the promotion, called the role “a critical role for BBC Studios’ future.”

As COO, Freeman will be responsible for leading several global business functions such as negotiating major acquisitions and partnerships, regulatory compliance in multiple international jurisdictions, and the company’s technology strategy.

Freeman has served as general counsel for BBC Studios since its inception, and previously held the same role at BBC Worldwide from 2011. Prior to that, he led BBC Worldwide’s legal and business affairs teams, as group head and then director. Freeman previously held several positions at the BBC, including as head of business affairs, radio & music, factual & learning and news.

Said Fussell in a statement of the appointment: “[Freeman] has overseen BBC Studios’ operational response to the pandemic, bringing his trademark calm and focus to a challenging set of circumstances for the business and its staff and ensuring that everyone has had the support they need to do their jobs. As the BBC’s commercial arm, we have recently committed to growing our returns to the BBC Group by at least 30% over the next five years, and are also working to secure our contribution beyond that for the longer term. In overseeing our operational strategy, Martyn will underpin our plans for success, by enabling teams to continue to focus on expanding our audiences and revenue.”

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