Discovery has announced that Avi Saxena, former Vice President of Technology for Amazon Marketplace, has joined the company as Chief Technology Officer, Direct-to-Consumer.
In this newly created role, Saxena will oversee the technology systems and global platforms that will serve all of Discovery’s Direct-to-Consumer products in the US, including MotorTrend, and internationally, including Eurosport Player and the company’s new GolfTV service outside the US.
Saxena also will lead Discovery’s new Seattle office, which will serve as a hub for the organisation’s growing Direct-to-Consumer team. The office, located in Bellevue, will open in the first quarter of 2019 and continue to expand throughout the year and beyond, focusing on core technology roles including software engineering, data science and analytics, content encoding and digital rights management, among others. This new, Seattle-based team will complement Discovery’s existing technology teams around the globe.
“Having worked closely with Avi at Amazon, I know his track record for creating best-in-business technology systems,” said Peter Faricy, Discovery’s CEO, Global Direct-to-Consumer . “As Discovery dives deeper into the Direct-to-Consumer space to deliver our superfan viewers more of the content they want, it makes perfect sense to create this new, DTC technology hub in Seattle. Discovery is embarking on so many exciting initiatives-–from food and home to cars, golf and live sports. We look forward to opening these opportunities to the incredible pool of talent in Seattle as we add to Discovery’s existing global tech team.”
“Discovery is one of the most dynamic companies in media right now, doubling its commitment to the Direct-to-Consumer space by building out this new, entrepreneurial team here in Seattle to augment the current global organisation,” said Saxena. “I am thrilled to help move the company forward, expand the platforms for fans to enjoy these much-loved brands, and create exciting new products that consumers cannot live without.”
Saxena brings over 20 years of high-level tech experience with him to Discovery, over half of that with Amazon in a variety of roles, most recently as Vice President of Technology for Amazon Marketplace. Saxena also held leadership roles at Microsoft and several Internet infrastructure startups.