Motorsport TV Names Fox Sports/SPEED Channel Veteran Kevin Annison as President
Former Fox Sports / SPEED Channel television network and digital media executive Kevin Annison will join Motorsport Network to spearhead the group’s planned expansion in traditional and internet television as the President of Motorsport.T.V. The appointment of Annison comes one week after former NASCAR Digital Media Vice President, Colin Smith, joined Motorsport Network as CEO.
The key management appointments highlight the growth Motorsport Network has experienced in the past two years. The network has become a large and independent automotive and motorsport-related digital platform, connecting hundreds of millions of people.
Motorsport Network acquired European cable network Motors TV last year and Annison will lead the team as the newly renamed Motorsport.tv expands from its European cable and satellite roots, to a global internet television network reaching large and small screens of race fans around the world.
Motorsport.tv already reaches 31 million homes in 42 different countries throughout Europe via cable and satellite and showcases more than 125 different motor racing championships.
“I’m very excited to help expand Motorsport.tv networks reach by tapping into the large and passionate global motorsports and auto enthusiast audience,” Annison told Motorsport.com.
“In 2001, I was part of the acquisition team when FOX Sports purchased Speedvision and we rebranded and launched SPEED Channel. My new role at Motorsport.tv will be very similar, except we are now creating a global network rather than just a North American platform,” Addison added. “The television landscape is radically changing and the traditional cable and satellite distribution is evolving rapidly. Motorsport.tv will focus heavily on digital-consumption, be very user-friendly, and will showcase the action on any device, anywhere, any time.
“As part of Motorsport Network, we have an incredible opportunity to link what we’re doing on Motorsport.tv with digital, print, data, commerce, social media and live events because of the motorsport audience 136 million page views every month” says Annison.
Annison not only played a role in the acquisition, relaunch and relocation of SPEED Channel from 2001 through 2004, he also served as Vice President and General Manager of the digital media division and oversaw the launch of SPEED2.com – the internet television OTT network dedicated to motorsports.
He also managed the network’s expansion into live & multi-camera streaming; multiplatform rights renewals with NASCAR, Formula 1 and MotoGP; the launch of mobile apps; the creation of video and video-on-demand channels on cable television, Apple TV, Hulu and YouTube and is also a renowned expert in digital and social media business models.
“Motorsport Network has an amazing array of brands within the portfolio that are now under the one umbrella,” Annison said. “The ability to leverage these large, active, international audiences and complement it with television is the perfect recipe for success that will give us a massive voice to promote our content offerings to the entire motorsport community worldwide.
“We’re going to be very innovative and adapt to the changing face of media. We are going to create content that is designed to go from traditional linear television to digital and back again.”
Motorsport Network CEO Smith welcomed the appointment of Annison, who he believes will play an important role in the network’s future growth.
“We’re thrilled to welcome Kevin to the team. Having somebody with his experience and knowledge of motorsport, television and the rapidly changing digital marketplace will be a huge help in our future expansion,” Smith said. “His experience in finance, programming, productions, operations and digital is just what we need to take Motorsport.tv to where we want to be. Our plan is to give the fans what they want, when they want – to take them trackside to witness the action wherever they are. Motorsport.tv and Motorsport Network will also provide brands with an incredibly broad multi-media opportunity to reach this fast-growing audience.”