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HIT Restructures EMEA Consumer Products Group

HIT Ent. has made a number of key changes to its U.K./European consumer products business following the recent appointment of Peter Byrne as evp of worldwide consumer products.

Katie Rollings fills the newly created position of vp of international marketing responsible for all strategic brand planning, marketing, retail development and creative services covering the entire international region.

Jon Owen is now vp of EMEA (Europe, the Middle East & Africa) consumer products responsible for all U.K. and EMEA licensing operations.

Dave King adds the international publishing group, headed by director of international publishing, Katie Price, to his responsibilities as vp of entertainment, which covers the home entertainment U.K./EMEA and live events businesses.

Joanna Fairclough assumes responsibility for all of the EMEA agent run business as business development director EMEA, while Laura Clarke moves over to director of licensing - hard goods U.K. and Warren Traeger is upped to director, licensing, soft goods U.K. All report to Owen.

"At HIT, we have one of the strongest licensing groups in the business and this realignment of responsibilities puts us firmly on course for the next stages of the Company's growth plans," said Byrne.

Established in 1989, HIT Ent. (, owned by private equity investment group Apax Partners since June 2005, is one of the world's leading pre-school children's entertainment producers and rights owners. With operations in the U.S., U.K., Canada, Hong Kong and Japan, the company's activities span television production and distribution, home entertainment, consumer products, publishing and live events. HIT is now one of the largest children's video distributors in the U.K. and the U.S. With more than 1,000 episodes of young children's programming, HIT sells programs to some 240 countries worldwide, in more than 40 different languages In 2005, the company joined Comcast Corp., PBS and Sesame Workshop to launch PBS KIDS Sprout, a 24-hour digital cable channel and VOD service for preschoolers.