Following the recent integration of Paramount Parks and Viacom Consumer Products under the leadership of Nickelodeon Networks president Herb Scannell, Leigh Anne Brodsky and Al Weber have been promoted to new positions, consolidating the leadership of the licensing and recreation businesses under Nickelodeon Enterprises, the ancillary business unit of Nickelodeon Networks. Brodsky has been named president, Nickelodeon and Viacom Consumer Products, and Weber has been named president, Viacom Recreation.
As a result of this reorganization, Andrea Hein, president of Viacom Consumer Products, and Kathleen Hricik, evp of MTVN International Program Enterprises, have elected to leave the company. Hein served as president of Viacom Consumer Products for the past 15 years and has been responsible for the company's various licensing programs including the successful STAR TREK program, as well as creating the innovative Bubba Gump Shrimp Company restaurant chain. Hricik worked for MTV Networks International for the past nine years, where she launched and built MTVN's extensive program sales and consumer products businesses internationally. Under Hricik's leadership, MTVN's properties have been syndicated to over 200 countries and are represented by nearly 600 product licenses.
Under this new alignment the Viacom Consumer Products business, as well as the licensing and merchandising for MTV Networks International, Comedy Central, Nickelodeon, Nick at Nite, Paramount, TV Land and Spike TV, will be consolidated under the leadership of Brodsky, a 25-year veteran of the licensing industry. Brodsky was evp of Nickelodeon Consumer Products. Internationally, she will co-manage the division with the regional channels.
Weber, formally president of Paramount Parks, will now be responsible for all live, location-based, licensed entertainment for the brands and properties of Comedy Central, MTV Networks International, Nickelodeon, Nick at Nite, Paramount, TV Land and Spike TV. Included in this group will be Paramount's regional theme parks; Nickelodeon's licensed theme park activities at Universal Studios in Hollywood and Orlando; Nickelodeon's and Paramount's live theatrical licensing business; the soon-to-be-opened Nickelodeon hotel in Orlando, Florida; the Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. restaurant chain; and CBS's Television City and Star Trek: The Experience, both located in Las Vegas.
"Leigh Anne Brodsky and Al Weber are two tremendously creative and innovative leaders who know the value of our brands to our audiences and are among the most respected executives in the licensing and recreation industries," said Jeffrey Dunn, president, Film and Nickelodeon Enterprises, to whom both Brodsky and Weber will report. "This consolidation of our licensing and recreational businesses under these two highly successful executives will continue the extension of our popular brands to ensure that we are everywhere our audiences are."
"Jeff Dunn has led the charge in managing our growing off-channel businesses and has assembled a terrific team of smart and creative executives to lead these businesses into the future," Scannell said. "Leigh Anne Brodsky is simply at the top of the class in the world of licensing and consumer products and she will now bring her expertise to grow our business on a global level. And Al Weber is one of the best operators in the theme park business, and we are thrilled to have him join our team."
During the last seven years at Nickelodeon, Brodsky has built Nick's consumer products business into the world's sixth largest licensing business and the world's largest licensing business based on TV-first properties. She is a twice-elected member of the LIMA Board of Directors, the licensing industry's governing body. Under her leadership Nickelodeon has garnered more than 30 industry awards including top licensing and Parents' Choice Award honors in the toy, video, interactive gaming and apparel categories.
Prior to joining Nickelodeon, Brodsky was svp, marketing, at Golden Books Entertainment Group, where she was responsible for the strategic marketing of all Golden Books' proprietary assets. Previously, she served as svp, marketing and merchandising, at Broadway Video where she directed the worldwide marketing of the company's TV and film properties. She began her career at United Media, where she was instrumental in building GARFIELD into a licensing phenomenon.
A 30-year veteran of the theme park industry, Weber started his career as a teenage ride operator in Cincinnati. He was promoted through a number of management positions at several locations including: director of operations at Paramount's Carowinds and evp/gm at Paramount's Great America and Paramount's Kings Island. In 1997, Weber was promoted to coo for Paramount Parks, responsible for overseeing the daily operations of the company. He was promoted to president/ceo in June 2002. Additionally, Weber is a two-time member of the International Assoc. of Amusement Parks and Attraction's (IAAPA) executive committee.
Nickelodeon Enterprises (www.nick.com) is the ancillary business unit of Nickelodeon Networks, responsible for licensing its own brands and characters as well as the properties of Comedy Central, Spike TV and non-Viacom properties. Nickelodeon Enterprises is active in all ancillary markets, including merchandise licensing, home video, interactive software, electronic media, online, wireless, book and magazine publishing, music, live tour and stage shows, theme parks and themed hotel venues. Nickelodeon Enterprises manages the largest TV-based licensing business in the world with $4 billion in retail sales. Paramount Parks, Viacom Consumer Products, Nickelodeon, Comedy Central, Spike TV, Nick at Nite and TV Land are trademarks of Viacom International Inc.