The French animation studio, Xilam has appointed Manya Zhou to the newly created position of head of business development for China with responsibility for developing the firm’s strategy in the region.
This will include managing local linear and digital distribution, licensing and merchandising, and potential co-production opportunities. Additionally, Zhou will forge strategic partnerships and build awareness in the market across IPs Oggy and the Cockroaches, Zig & Sharko, Paprika, and Mr Magoo.
Zhou is based in Xilam’s head office in Paris and reports to Morgann Favennec, EVP Global Sales Development. She joins from Amuse, a subsidiary of Millimages dedicated to digital production and distribution, where she was manager of the Asian market and handled co-production, investment and licensing opportunities for the company’s IPs with Chinese partners.
As part of this, she managed distribution of Amuse’s animated properties across major local digital, OTT and IPTV platforms in addition to creating and launching new IPs in China. Prior to this, Zhou held roles at Spideo, in addition to the Festival National du Film d’animation and Festival Ciné-Jeune de l’Aisne in France.
Morgann Favennec, EVP global sales development at Xilam Animation, said: “I’m delighted to welcome Manya to the Xilam Animation team. China represents a huge growth opportunity for us and with her wealth of experience and comprehensive knowledge of the market, we’re confident she will play a pivotal role in not only maximising the local potential of our existing IPs, but also forging new partnerships to deepen our presence in the region.”
Manya Zhou added: “I’m thrilled to join Morgann and the team to further fuel the success that Xilam has achieved in China already. With its fantastic and rapidly growing slate of animated content, I look forward to building awareness of Xilam’s properties in the region and embarking on this exciting new chapter in the company’s international growth.”