Fox Networks Group has named Michael Biard president, distribution, replacing Michael Hopkins who was picked to head up the Hulu joint venture last week.
In his new position Biard will oversee all distribution strategy and sales and marketing activity for Fox’s 45 national and regional domestic television networks as well as video-on-demand, online, mobile and other emerging platforms. He will also oversee network distribution at Fox Broadcasting Company.
“In an ever-evolving media environment, Mike possesses a rare combination of executive skills,” said Fox Networks Group chairman and CEO Peter Rice in a statement. “He’s a gifted negotiator who is also able to analyze and solve complex issues in order to create significant value for Fox and our MVPD and broadcast affiliate partners. Over the past several years he has provided thoughtful direction as the leader of our national accounts and digital distribution teams, and has made vast contributions to the success of our networks business. We are delighted he will be leading our distribution efforts.”
Biard has been with Fox for 13 years and has played a key role in the growth of the networks group, including the successful launch and acquisition of networks such as FOX Sports 1, FXX, National Geographic Channel, Nat Geo WILD, Nat Geo Mundo, BTN (formerly Big Ten Network), Fox College Sports, Fox Soccer Plus, Yankees Entertainment & Sports Network (YES), and several other regional sports networks.
“I’m excited for the opportunity,” Biard said in a statement. “I look forward to leading the extraordinary team we’ve built here at Fox Networks, especially during such a dynamic and challenging period in our industry.”
Biard joined Fox as director of affiliate business affairs (2000-2001) and was promoted to vice president of affiliate business affairs (2001-2002) before transitioning to national accounts in 2002. He was promoted to senior vice president, national accounts in 2006 and assumed the role as head of national accounts in 2007, including affiliate business affairs. He was promoted to executive vice president, distribution in January 2010, assuming oversight of Fox’s digital distribution efforts (including “TV Everywhere” initiatives and video-on-demand).
Before joining Fox Networks, Biard was a practicing attorney. He is a graduate of Columbia University (New York) and Loyola Law School (Los Angeles).