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Hulu appoints former Sony exec to CTO role

Hulu has appointed Sony Network Entertainment International’s former senior vice president of product engineering, Tian Lim, as its new chief technology officer. 

Announcing the appointment on the Hulu blog, company CEO Mike Hopkins praised Lim as a “leading example of a builder and innovator” and likened his hiring to finding a needle-in-a-haystack. Lim will now be tasked with growing and scaling Hulu’s technology, said Hopkins.

The appointment comes just over a year after Hulu’s former CTO Rich Tom and previous CEO Jason Kilar announced they were leaving the firm.

Hulu’s director of program manager Brad Suter has been overseeing the technology team on an interim basis since last year, though Lim’s appointment marks the firm’s first full-time replacement for Tom. Suter will now report into Lim.

At Sony, Lim oversaw the firm’s North American engineering and service operations, heading up a team of hundreds of engineers responsible for leading client and service engineering for the PlayStation Store on the web, PS3 and PS4, and many of the network features of the PS4.

He also spent eight years at Microsoft Xbox, where latterly he lead the development for the Xbox Live service, Xbox 360 operating system and Kinect.

“We now serve over five million Hulu Plus subscribers, with roughly 50% of those subscribers streaming exclusively on devices, with living room viewing accounting for over half of all content consumption on the service. That’s in addition to our 30 million monthly users on the free Hulu service,” said Hopkins.

“Tian’s depth of experience working on the leading technology platforms and devices in the marketplace, will be invaluable as we scale and, simultaneously, continue to provide the best user experience possible across every platform – living room, mobile and web.”

Larcher’s reported move follows the departures this year of CEO Jason Kilar and chief technology officer Rich Tom – a decision that the pair first announced in January.

Hopkins came on board as Hulu CEO in October, taking over from interim chief executive and former Hulu senior vice president of content Andy Forssell, who subsequently left the firm.