Former Rightster and ITV executive Jonathan Bates has joined action sports media company Factory Media as creative director, partnerships.
In the newly created role, Bates will work to expand Factory Media’s content distribution network from owned media through its 27 lifestyle sports and culture brands, spanning print and online.
This will include launching dedicated YouTube channels and creating a syndicated publisher network. He will also formalise Factory Media’s partnerships with creators and talent.
He will report directly to Dee Smith, who joined Factory Media late last year as director of content.
Bates joins from video-distribution specialist Rightster, where he was director of entertainment, leading distribution, monetisation and strategy for the multichannel network’s entertainment-focused rights holders, brands and publishers in the UK, US and EMEA.
Before that, he was head of multiplatform video at ITV, responsible for the UK commercial broadcaster’s short form video, including programme support, digital firsts and branded content.
“I’ve poached Jonathan because he’s the only person who truly understands how we plan to disrupt the traditional MCN model,” said Smith.
“Factory is all about talent and Jonathan has bags of it, along with current and direct senior-level expertise in both the creative and commercial aspects of extracting maximum value from video content across all platforms. His skill set and frankly tireless approach to deal-making is exactly what we — as one of world’s biggest owners of content in the lifestyle sports and culture genre — need to realise our ambition of creating a targeted and unique content distribution network.”