Advanced Television

BBC Studios appoints Raia to Brands & Licensing Division

September 26, 2023

BBC Studios has announced that Suzy Raia, SVP Consumer Products & Business Development, and her New York based team will join the Brands & Licensing Division from October 2nd. Raia will report into Nicki Sheard, President of Brands and Licensing.  

Led by President Sheard, Brands and Licensing extends audiences enjoyment of their favourite programmes and brands through innovative partnerships and licensing of IP including Bluey, Doctor Who, Top Gear, Dancing with the Stars and BBC Studios’ factual umbrella brand BBC Earth, the home of shows such as Blue Planet II, Frozen Planet II and upcoming Blue Planet III. 

Raia joined the BBC in 2018, just a few months before Bluey launched on air in Australia, as part of the Consumer Products and Licensing team. Her move shows a commitment to the global growth of key IP’s Bluey and Doctor Who. 

Prior to BBC Studios, Raia spent 19 years at Nickelodeon working on a variety of kids hit titles including SpongeBob, Dora the Explorer, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Paw Patrol.  She also oversaw sister network titles including Comedy Central’s South Park and Paramount IPs as well giving her experience working on franchise development across a number of genres and demographics. 

Raia has been responsible for a number of BBC Studio’s key partnerships for global phenomenon Bluey in North America, notably Macy’s for their iconic Thanksgiving Day parade and more recently CAMP, bringing to fans new and innovative ways to interact with the loveable, inexhaustible Blue Heeler dog. Additionally, her team has brough over 50 licensing deals that have positioned Bluey to become a leading preschool franchise across the retail landscape in the US.  

The appointment follows a number of key hires as the division ramps up its activities, most notably former Co-CEO of Jungle Creations Nat Poulter as Vice President of Digital – Commercial and Ashwin Desai as Global Director for Gaming & Interactive. 

Sheard said: ‘This is an exciting move for the division and BBC Studios as we look to grow our capability to build a global consumer products & licensing business which focuses on our most promising IPs, in this case, Bluey and Doctor Who. The US in particular is a key market for us and success in the region is key to meet our financial goals and achieve global success. I have no doubt that Suzy and her team will help us achieve these goals and I am happy to welcome her to the team.” 

Raia added: ‘Since having joined the Global Distribution team at BBC Studios in 2018, I’ve experienced nothing short of extraordinary support to build a team positioned for long term success for the CP & L category across NA & LatAm. As the leadership team envisioned building franchise success , we were granted resources to strategically develop an organisation positioned to maximize hit intellectual properties mined from the vast library of titles output by the stellar production teams at Studios.  Unifying the region with the global team underscores the opportunity at hand and I’m confident that under Nicki’s leadership, the BBC Studios CP&L team will be a global powerhouse lead by popular titles Bluey and Doctor Who.I’m so excited to work with Nicki and her team in this next stage of our journey as a global organisation.’ 

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