NBC Uni Int'l taps head of digital initiatives

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LONDON -- NBC Universal International has hired Roma Khanna as president of global networks and digital initiatives, the company said Wednesday.

Khanna joins NBC Universal International from Canadian media company Chum Television, where she was co-head and senior vp content. She will be based in the British capital in her new role.

NBC Universal International president Peter Smith, who made the announcement, said Khanna will take up the reins in September.

She is charged with generating growth through geographical expansion, local and pan-regional partnerships, and new channel creation, with a focus on strengthening the content and identity of the Sci Fi Channel, 13th Street and Universal Channel brands, Smith said.

Khanna also will aim to leverage regional synergies and cross-platform alliances through sales, marketing and advertising strategies and will oversee the digital initiatives division as well as create new digital businesses and content for NBC Uni.

The hire follows the recent announcement by NBC Universal International of plans to launch 20 additional local television channels in 23 countries across Europe, Asia and Latin America in a drive to more than double revenue from its global networks division.

"Roma is a talented media executive with great experience building multiplatform media businesses," NBC Universal president and CEO Jeff Zucker said. "We are pleased to have her take charge of our global networks and digital initiatives groups and help them seize the phenomenal growth opportunities that exist in the international marketplace."

Added Khanna, "I am excited to lead two such strategic areas of growth for NBC Universal International, working in partnership across the company."
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