Williams to lead BBC Worldwide format push


LONDON -- BBC Worldwide on Tuesday said it has hired Gareth Williams to the newly created role of executive producer for international format development, overseeing the creation and development of formats aimed at the U.S. and international markets.

The role reflects the increased significance that formats represent for the British pubcaster, which has seen such homegrown fare as "Strictly Come Dancing" ("Dancing With the Stars") and "The Weakest Link" go on to huge international success.

Reporting to BBC Worldwide's director of formats Colin Jarvis, Williams will be in charge of developing relationships with potential international format partners -- working with independent producers as well as the BBC's production and development teams -- and liaising with overseas production departments to bring ideas to transmission.

Williams joins BBC Worldwide from Granada Television, where he was executive producer of daytime magazine show "This Morning" and worked as a development executive on ITV's daytime and lifestyle output.

Jarvis said the appointment will boost Worldwide's commissioning experience.

"Gareth joins us with a wide range of production experience both in the U.K. and internationally, and with his past experiences as a channel head and a commissioning editor, he brings strength to BBC Worldwide's international production team," he said in a statement.