Viaplay’s strategy will “remain the same” following CEO Anders Jensen exit, says exec

Vanda Rapti

Viaplay’s strategy will “remain the same” following the departure of CEO Anders Jensen, said the company exec Vanda Rapti. 

Speaking at the New Market Europe (NEM) in Dubrovnik, Croatia, the EVP and chief commercial officer for North America did not dive deeply into the sudden departure of the former CEO. But she noted the company remains committed to their existing strategy and “we will be working with the new CEO (Jorgen Madsen Lindemann) to see how best to deliver that.”

Jensen who served at Viaplay and predecessor Modern Times Group (MTG) for more than a decade announced he was exiting the Nordic company this week, after the service faced economic hitbacks. Lindemann becomes CEO following almost 30 years with the company.

She said, “we have grown both as a product as well as a company in terms of revenue and profits which have been exceptionally well, objectively.”

“But there are two sides of the story,” she added. “One is the objective growth that we’ve had, what we have created and that continues to go up in these market conditions. What we are doing now is there has been some adjustments in the future projections. But we have not previously adjusted to the market conditions like everyone else has done.”

Viaplay said subscriber numbers, which are expected to stand at 7.7 million at the end of Q2, were being hit by the effects of the cost of living crisis and increased churn following price increases, while advertising revenues are expected to be down between 12% and 16% on an organic basis in Q2, due to “the sharp and rapid deterioration” in the advertising markets.

Rapti said with the appointment of Lindemann and his experience, the company is not starting from scratch and “know what we are getting”.

The Nordic outfit operates across multiple territories across Europe including the Nordics, Baltics, Poland, The Netherlands and the UK. The exec pointed out “we are in small markets in terms of volume of customers but we’re a big service in those small markets”.

“That means that one cannot afford to only have one series and be successful in one small market. You always need to have in mind especially the size of projects that there needs to be an appetite and interest for these projects.”

According to Rapti, Viaplay will soon be launching its service with new partners into more markets and will be expanding its content portfolio.

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