Dentsu Aegis Network has appointed Mike Nakamura as executive director of the newly formed DAN Entertainment & Sports, reporting to network boss Tim Andree.
It is the fifth major appointment by chief executive and executive chairman Andree, whose new structure comprises five lines of business.
The appointment of Nakamura, who recently moved from Japan to London, will be interpreted by many as another sign that Dentsu and DAN are coalescing to ultimately become "one Dentsu". Accordingly, one of Nakamura's key responsibilities is to align partnerships with entertainment and sports specialists between Dentsu Inc in Japan and the DAN network.
In addition to leading DAN Entertainment & Sports, Nakamura will retain his role as global president of Dentsu X, reporting to Peter Huijboom, global chief executive, media and performance and global clients.
DAN Entertainment & Sports focuses on production, rights and distribution of content and entertainment, exploring naming and broadcast rights opportunities, ecommerce and ad inventory, and infrastructure for sports franchises.
It will have close ties with Dentsu Inc, which has strong foundations in sports and entertainment.
Nakamura will now oversee the consolidation of product, content business and market strategy for the discipline, working with Amplifi global chief commercial officer Alastair Shearly-Sanders and The Story Lab global president Michael Iskas.
Plans to make DAN "more global" are expected to result in the scrapping of the Aegis name at some point in the near future.
Earlier this year, DAN boosted creativity with a quartet of leadership appointments. Mcgarrybowen co-founder Gordon Bowen became chief creative officer at DAN; Dick Van Motam, chief executive of DAN's branded agencies, was made global chief executive, creative; Nicholas Rey was appointed chief network development officer; and So Aoki was named chief corporate planning officer.
Nakamura said: "I look forward to leveraging my early career experiences to design DAN Entertainment & Sports. DAN is in a unique position, with the chance to offer new revenue opportunities for sports franchises, content producers and our clients. We have already begun the journey with The Story Lab and Amplifi, but the chance to activate with our agency brands across the network, and with our colleagues in Japan, is clear."
Andree added: "Dentsu Inc has an exceptional history in entertainment and sports. As critical players in major sporting events and properties, as well a vast array of film and television experience, we come armed with the firepower to create new and innovative revenue models in this space. Mike brings the right knowledge from Tokyo, coupled with his global leadership experience to design a compelling DAN Entertainment & Sports offering for our clients, producers and partners."