Long reads

The Euro50 Q&A: Asanga Gunatillaka, Virgin Media

Asanga Gunatillaka, commercial director, digital entertainment, Virgin Media, was charged with taking to market Virgin Media’s most significant product for some time this year – its next generation TiVo-powered set-top box.

Age 34

Education Masters in Electronic Engineering, Imperial, London.

Previous positions Product and strategy roles in Virgin Media; Consultant at Accenture, Lutron Electronics, US.

Last year’s highlights Bringing Virgin Media’s TiVo product to market and seeing the overwhelmingly positive response from our staff, existing customers and switchers from Sky. The highlight of my career so far.

Most significant industry development The launch of multiscreen propositions from several operators, providing customers with more value from their entertainment subscription.

Goals for next year My goal is to provide TiVo to a significant portion of our customers by the end of next year (I’ll tell you my personal target once we’ve hit it!) and bring our own unique multiscreen proposition to life for the mass market.

Industry challenges and opportunities The main challenge facing the industry next year is communicating and reliably delivering the benefits of rich, next generation entertainment to consumers in an easy to understand way, so they can just ‘get-it’. We’ve started that journey already with our TiVo launch campaign. The opportunity is there for the industry to bring faster innovation to entertainment platforms, continually delighting customers by responding to their needs. I’m proud that Virgin Media is leading the way on this.

Alternative career choice A career in the automotive industry. I’m a petrolhead.

TV character most identified with Jack Bauer.

Most admired personality Christine Lagarde, the MD of the International Monetary Fund. I admire her composure, tenacity and spirit.

Life outside work Travel, tennis, Tolkien and Top Gear.

Tags: UK, Virgin Media

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