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Fox Networks Taps Biard as President of Distribution

Fox Networks has promoted Michael Biard to president of distribution.

Biard’s ascension comes just days after Fox’s previous affiliate leader Mike Hopkins was named CEO of Hulu, a joint venture of Fox parent 21st Century Fox, The Walt Disney Co. and Comcast.

In his new job, Biard, who had been serving as executive vice president of distribution, will oversee distribution strategy and sales and marketing activity for Fox’s 45 national and regional domestic TV networks. He will also oversee network distribution at Fox Broadcasting Co.

Over his 13 year-tenure at Fox, Biard has played an integral role in the growth of the networks group, including the successful launch and acquisition of such services 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, YES and several other regional sports networks.

He joined Fox as director of affiliate business affairs (2000-2001) before being promoted to vice president of affiliate business affairs (2001-2002) and then 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 and video-on-demand initiatives.

“In an ever-evolving media environment, Mike possesses a rare combination of executive skills,” Peter Rice, chairman and CEO of the Fox Networks Group, said 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.”

Noted Biard: “I’m excited for the opportunity. 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.”