Rhys Beer to head up Facebook’s sports programming

Rhys Beer to head up Facebook’s sports programming

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Facebook has appointed Rhys Beer as its new head of sports partnership and programming initiatives in Europe, the Middle East and Africa in the social media giant’s latest move to strengthen its sports broadcast team.

Beer joins from US-based media group NBCUniversal, where he worked for almost five years, most recently as vice president of sports distribution and business development.

During that time, Beer was responsible for NBCUniversal’s sports interests outside of North America in a role that entailed distribution, channel development, rights and strategy.

Prior to that, Beer held the position of commercial director at digital sports media group Perform, and was senior product manager of sport at Virgin media. He has also worked at broadcaster Setanta Sports and England’s Football Association (FA).

The news comes after Peter Hutton was named Facebook’s director of global live sports partnerships and programming in March.

Hutton joined the social media giant from sports broadcaster Eurosport, where he was chief executive.

 Beer announced the news of his appointment on Wednesday via a Facebook post, saying: “Great to be checking in on Facebook, at Facebook. Fascinating and inspiring first week in new role in which I'll be leading Facebook's live sports partnerships and programming initiatives in Europe, Middle East and Africa.

“Thanks for your belief and trust Dan Reed, Jerry [Newman, head of sports partnership, EMEA], Peter, Devi [Mahadevia, head of live sports programming US] and team - I couldn't be more thrilled to be joining you all at such an exciting time.”