Press release from The Walt Disney Company

The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS) today announced the appointment of Robert Gilby as Managing Director, The Walt Disney Company South East Asia, reporting to Andy Bird, Chairman Walt Disney International.

In this newly created role, Mr. Gilby will be responsible for driving the company’s strategy, coordinating and leading all Disney business divisions, overseeing Disney global franchises, expanding existing businesses and seeking out new business opportunities across the region with a focus on Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, the Philippines and Vietnam.

“Expanding our brand internationally is the cornerstone of our company’s growth strategy,” said Mr. Bird. “By creating a fully integrated business across this dynamic region we will be able to harness the market opportunity and deliver on strategic priorities generating significant growth for the Company. Robert’s track record in the industry makes him the perfect person to lead the team.”

Mr. Gilby will continue in his current role of Managing Director, Disney Media Distribution Asia Pacific, reporting to Ben Pyne, President, Global Distribution, Disney Media Networks.

“Over the past 4 years, we have seen extraordinary growth for Disney Media Distribution’s content distribution business in the Asia Pacific region. Rob has been a driving force in that growth, working collaboratively with our distribution partners throughout the region to develop new, innovative business models and delivery methods across a variety of platforms," said Mr. Pyne. "I’m thrilled that, in addition to his new responsibilities, he will continue to lead our talented Disney Media Distribution team, a group that represents the gold standard in the industry.”

Growth in global emerging markets is expected to outpace growth in the developed world. The region is home to a $1.8trillion economy growing at 6.2% annually through 2015 and its population of 516million people[1] consists of 140million kids representing 27 percent of the population. The media and entertainment sector is a $24billion industry growing at 8per cent[2] compound annual growth rate.

“The economic and market fundamentals of the South East Asian media and entertainment sector represent an enormously attractive opportunity for Disney, “ said Mr. Gilby. “It’s incredibly exciting to be given the opportunity to work in one of the most amazing emerging markets in the world. The organization we create and investments we make, will be focused on capturing the immense potential of the region.”

Robert joined Disney in January 2006 as Managing Director of Disney Channels in the United Kingdom, Scandinavia & Emerging Markets. In this role, he had overall responsibility for the Disney Channels’ portfolio of channels. Since January 2008, he has overseen Disney’s Media Distribution business across the Asia Pacific region.

Prior to Disney, Robert worked at Turner Entertainment Networks Asia where he was Vice President, Network Development and Strategic Marketing responsible for all marketing and strategic development activities for Cartoon Network, Boomerang and Turner Classic Movies across Asia Pacific. He joined Turner in 2000 as Head of Business Development in Asia Pacific responsible for strategy, M&A, new channel & digital business development.

A qualified Chartered Accountant and consultant by background, Robert started his career with PricewaterhouseCoopers’ Entertainment & Media group and worked in London, Hong Kong and Tokyo in his time with the firm.

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