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The Euro50 Q&A: Robert Berza, head of new media division, CME

Despite facing a tough ad market across the region, pan-European channel provider CME can point to some successes over the past year – not least the growth of its online VOD service Voyo, responsibility for which belongs to Robert Berza.

Age 32

Education University of Journalism and Mass Communication, Bucharest.

Previous positions Content manager of CME’s new media division, internet director ProTV (CME Romania), PR, journalist.

Life outside work Being the family chef – I love to cook & grill – sports – a lot of them, from playing to watching it live on stadiums or on TV – music concerts, playing with my Labrador.

Achievements in 2012 Establishing Voyo as the leading paid video-on-demand project in CEE and achieving audience leadership in Romania, amongst local online companies

Most significant industry developments The almost total convergence of TV with internet, driven by an accelerated growth of connected devices – tablets, mobile, TV – and the strong international expansion of key players in VOD – Netflix, Lovefilm, even Hulu.

Key challenges for 2013 Pressure on the internet display ad market and a strong assault from Facebook and Google in CEE. The local online players will have to pull out all the stops in order not to be severely damaged.

Goals for next year Increase our audience share and market share in some key markets. Also to make more people smile: a direct result of us driving successful products.

Most admired industry personality I will tell you the companies and projects I admire the most and you will understand what personalities I also follow: BSkyB – as this is a great entertainment empire with the roots in classic TV entertainment; Lovefilm – an amazing product coming from an e-commerce giant who learned how to fight on content distribution; Axel Springer – a print company that does not agree with the “newspapers are dying” philosophy and rebuilt the whole model around Internet while expanding into classifieds & services.

Favourite TV show Following my “life outside work” answers: the Champions League final and any derby where Liverpool is involved; Masterchef; Richard Hammond’s Miracles of Nature or any documentary produced by Andrew Marr; Mike & Molly.

Tags: CME

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