Randy Freer Named President and COO of Fox Networks Group

Courtesy of Fox Networks Group
Randy Freer

The former Fox Sports co-president will transition into a broad strategic and operational role, while Eric Shanks becomes sole president and COO of the sports division.

Randy Freer, who had most recently been co-president of Fox Sports, has been appointed to a new position as president and chief operating officer of Fox Networks Group, it was announced Monday by chairman and CEO Peter Rice.

Freer will have a broad strategic and operational role, according to the announcement, with oversight of revenue, distribution and operations. He will also continue some of his responsibilities at Fox Sports, including rights acquisitions and relationships with teams and the sports leagues.

Eric Shanks, who was co-president of Fox Sports with Freer, will now have sole responsibility for the group as president and COO, reporting to Rice.

"Randy is an outstanding executive and having played a key role in growing our powerhouse television sports business, he brings impressive skills as both an operator and builder of businesses," said Rice. "He will be a key partner for me in overseeing and driving continued growth of our global channels business which spans nearly 400 channels in 200 countries."

"The Fox Networks Group has a portfolio of channels and hit content that is unrivaled and connects with viewers, advertisers and distributors the world over," said Freer.

Executives now reporting directly to Freer are Michael Biard, president of distribution, Fox Networks; Toby Byrne, president of national ad sales, Fox Broadcasting Company and Fox Sports Media Group; Lou LaTorre, president of advertising sales, Fox Cable Entertainment Networks and Fox Hispanic Media Group; and Kyle Sherman, executive vp home team sports. 

FNG finance & business development, corporate communications, legal and human resources functions will report jointly to Rice and Freer.

Those who will continue to report to Rice directly are John Landgraf, CEO of FX Networks and FX Productions; Hernan Lopez, president and CEO of Fox International Channels; David Lyle, CEO of National Geographic Channels U.S. and global programming; and Kevin Reilly, chairman of entertainment, Fox Broadcasting Company.

Freer first joined Fox in 1997 and has served as president and before that COO of FOX Sports Networks. He was named co-president and COO of FOX Sports in 2011.

Before joining Fox, Freer was senior vp business affairs at Active Entertainment (an animation syndication company) and before that he held executive roles at Turner Broadcasting during a nine-year tenure there.

In addition to his role at Fox, Freer is on the board of BTN (formerly the Big Ten Network) and the After School All Stars, which provides after-school programs for children.