Jonathan Mills to Head Legal Affairs at BBC Worldwide

BBC Worldwide has appointed Jonathan Mills as Director of Business and Legal Affairs for its Content & Brands businesses, succeeding the departed Saul Venit who left to become Lookout Point’s Chief Operating Officer last October.

Mills will oversee legal and business affairs direction, strategy and advice for the BBC commercial arm’s two divisions including all rights acquisitions, content partnerships and exploitation of its global brands. His role will focus on leading the business and legal affairs teams responsible for deal making and drafting and negotiating agreements concerning the acquisition of rights for BBC Worldwide from both in-house production departments, independent producers and other third parties across the range of the company’s production and distribution activities.

Devising and negotiating deal frameworks for partnerships with key talent and independent production partners to help secure the IP pipeline for BBC Worldwide will also form an area of focus for the position.

Following a competitive internal and external recruitment process for the position, which Mills was already deputising for, he will take up his new role with immediate effect, reporting directly to Martyn Freeman, BBC Worldwide’s General Counsel.

Mills qualified as a lawyer at Addleshaw Goddard, before spending 3 years at ITV and then joining BBC Worldwide in 2008 as Head of Business and Legal Affairs, Indie Unit. He led the business affairs team within the Content division acquiring rights from independent producers for a number of years before taking on responsibility for all of BBC Worldwide’s acquisition relationships from in-house and independent producers as Head of Business Affairs for Content Partnerships. Some of his recent projects include advising on various production partnerships including BBC Worldwide’s investment into Lookout Point and partnerships with Red Planet and Curve Media.

Martyn Freeman, General Counsel for BBC Worldwide commented: “As BBC Worldwide increases the range and diversity of its indie partnerships, leverages its existing and fledgling global brands, and supports BBC Production during its transition, I’m thrilled that someone as experienced as Jonathan will play such a key part in the senior team.”