Flextech Television, the cable and satellite TV giant, has finally
resolved the new structure of its sales and marketing functions as it
prepares to ratify its multi-channel joint venture with the BBC.
Richard Burdett, currently the vice-president of sales and marketing at
Flextech, is to relinquish his sales brief to take on a broader
corporate marketing task. As vice-president of marketing, his brief will
extend to UK Gold and Living - the existing joint-venture channels in
which both the BBC and Flextech have an interest - and the new
BBC-Flextech cable and satellite channels.
At the same time, Tony Wheble, currently the sales controller of
Flextech, has landed the top job in an expanded sales operation.
Wheble was in direct competition for the top position with Paul Taylor,
the sales director of UK Gold and Living. As the Flextech man, Wheble
will take on the mantle of vice-president of sales with a portfolio
that, like Burdett’s, will also include UK Gold and Living and the new
cable and satellite channels.
Taylor is still understood to be in talks about a role within the new
sales line-up, but was unavailable for comment. His team will join an
expanded Flextech sales operation.
The changes lay to rest speculation about the future of the UK Gold and
Living sales teams, which has been raging since Flextech first signalled
its interest in acquiring Cox Communications’ and Pearson’s stakes in
As well as selling advertising on the existing Flextech channels - which
include Bravo, Discovery, Challenge TV and TCC - the new operation will
also sell up to eight new BBC-Flextech channels, including a style
channel, a natural history channel, BBC Catch-Up TV, a music channel and
a sports channel.
The deal with the BBC is expected to be formally sealed this week and
Flextech’s takeover of UK Gold and Living will form a part of the
The new channels are set to launch this summer.
It is still unclear how the new BBC Flextech channels will fit in with
the existing channel line-up, particularly UK Gold since Showcase - one
of the planned stations - will also be a BBC golden oldies channel.