Alex Okosi bows out of ViacomCBS, as Paterson, Twala take over as co-GMs

Twala take over as co-GMs

Alex Okosi, the Executive Vice President and Managing Director of VCN Africa and BET International would by end of February this year bow out of the ViacomCBS Networks International (VCNI).

He would be replaced by the duo of Craig Paterson and Monde Twala, who will become co-General Managers of ViacomCBS Networks Africa from March 1, 2020, the company announced in Lagos on Tuesday.

Announcing the leadership change, David Lynn, President & CEO of VCNI, said: “I’m immensely grateful to Alex for his contribution to the success of VCNI, including his role in developing such a strong team of successors.  Alex’s leadership has been essential to our success in Africa and to the continued growth of BET International.”

“I am proud to have had the opportunity to build our Africa business from the ground up,” said the highly celebrated Okosi.

He added: “This has played a pivotal role in transforming the music and content space and changing the narrative on Africa.

“Leading our Africa and BET International businesses to success is a testament to the extraordinary teams, colleagues and partners that I have worked with throughout my tenure.

“ViacomCBS has been my home for more than 20 fantastic years, and I leave behind incredible creative and commercial talent that will continue to deliver growth.”

It would be recalled that Okosi took over leadership of BET International in 2017, and has continued to advance the value of the brand internationally, delivering double-digit distribution growth and improving profitability and margins.

Under Okosi’s leadership, BET International elevated its presence at the BET Awards by incorporating the “Best International Act” award into the live broadcast, which simulcast live in Africa for the first time.

In addition, BET International expanded its presence during the BET “Hip Hop Awards” by launching a new category to honour artists from around the world.

Starting from March 1, 2020, Twala and Paterson will assume their new roles as co-General Managers of VCN Africa.

As co-head of the business, Twala, Senior Vice President & General Manager, Editorial VCN Africa, will focus on content, creative, editorial and marketing across all VCNI brands.

According to the company, Twala is currently the Vice President of ViacomCBS Networks Africa’s BET, Youth & Music brands and is responsible for driving the development and growth of iconic music, youth and entertainment brands such as BET, MTV, MTV Base and MTV Music24, across the African continent.

He joined the company in 2016 after nearly 20 years’ experience in the South African broadcasting and media industry.

Similarly, Paterson, Senior Vice President & General Manager, VCN Africa, will be responsible for all corporate functions, including business development and strategy.

Currently Senior Vice President, Business Operations for ViacomCBS Networks Africa, Paterson, is responsible for driving strategic growth and business opportunities in Africa.

Prior to this role, Paterson was responsible for Operations and Finance for multimedia brands MTV, MTV Music24, Nickelodeon, Nick Toons, Nick Junior, MTV Base, BET and Comedy Central on the African continent.

He spent nearly five years at Viacom beginning in 2011 as VP of Operations and Finance in Africa, and returned to the company in 2018 as Senior Vice President of Business Operations in Africa, the company said.


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