Long reads

The Euro50 Q&A – Niall Curran, Chellomedia


With Niall Curran as chief operating officer, Chellomedia, Liberty Global’s content arm, has enjoyed a busy year, investing in content and new feeds as well as acquiring a stake in Bosnian free-to-air broadcaster OBN.

Age 47

Education BSc in Physics from Manchester University England.

Previous positions From 1995 to 2000 was with the Walt Disney Company, latterly as executive vice-president operations for Walt Disney Europe. Prior to that was part of Disney’s International TV business management team.

Last year’s highlights We have significantly strengthened our TV channel brands over the last year, with investment in content, new feeds, HD and on demand features. It’s been great to see how everyone in the TV content supply chain – programme producers/distributors, channels and pay platforms – have come to a shared view of what rights the video product needs going forward. We were also delighted to invest in free to air broadcaster OBN this year, a new area of development for Chellomedia.

Most significant industry development The positive way the industry is reacting positively to consumer take up of the iPad and other tablets, developing new integrated multi-screen products.

Goals for next year Developing our all channels for the multiscreen, on-demand future is a key goal and we look forward to working closely with our pay TV platform partners to help them build their product features. In addition we aim to keep ourselves at the forefront of some exciting high growth markets outside of Europe.

Industry challenges and opportunities There is a great opportunity for the industry to capitalise on customer enthusiasm for TV everywhere and on demand while broadband speeds and penetration continue to increase. The challenge will be to do this without giving the product away. Great content costs money to make and deliver, no matter what the technology it is being experienced on.

Alternative career choice The music business, another home of technology driven innovation.

TV character most identified with Either Eric or Ari from Entourage, depending on how my day is going.

Most admired personality Sir Alex Ferguson of Manchester United for focused, consistent leadership under sustained pressure. That’s quite an admission for an Arsenal fan.

Life outside work Spending time with my family, music, travel, playing and following sport.