The Euro50 Q&A – Mark Hollinger, Discovery Networks International

This year has seen a rapid expansion of Discovery’s footprint internationally under president and CEO Mark Hollinger, following the group’s decision to split its European business into a western European division under Dee Forbes and CEEMEA under Kasia Kieli. The female-skewed TLC channel recently passed 100 million homes, following launches in Denmark, Finland and Poland.

Age 52

Education J.D. from Yale Law School and a B.A. degree (summa cum laude) in history and political science from Colgate University.

Previous positions Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, senior associate, 1985-91; Columbia Law School, lecturer, entertainment law, 1988-91; Discovery Communications, VP/deputy general counsel, 1991-94; Discovery Channel Asia, acting GM, ‘94 ; Discovery Communications, VP international business development/ VP, deputy counsel, 1995-96; general counsel, 1996-2001; EVP, corporate operations, 2001-03; senior EVP, corporate operations/general counsel, 2003-07; COO, 2008-09

Last year’s highlights The successful rollout of TLC; industry-leading results.

Last year’s most significant development The continued momentum toward a VOD world – whether Netflix, UPC’s Horizon initiative, iPlayer or TV Everywhere.

Goals for next year Continue to build the strongest non-fiction portfolio in global pay television.

Industry challenges and opportunities Figuring out the business model for programmes in the VOD environment in order to continue investments in great content; and figuring out how the VOD environment can co-exist successfully with the traditional pay TV environment.

Alternative career choice Sports management – as with TV, it would give me a chance to work every day with something I love.

TV character most identified with A contestant on The Amazing Race – always on the go, with lots of challenges to face

Most admired personality Jimmy Carter, who has used his position to promote important, but unglamorous, causes like free elections and affordable housing.

Life outside work Hang out with my three sons, watch football, read and, crazily enough, travel.