Date: 07.02.2012

Posted by: John Cross

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Social games publisher We R Interactive is ramping up its drive to become a global digital publisher with the appointment of Paul Whitehead - former head of Corporate and Business Development, Channel 4 as Global Commercial Director.

Whitehead will oversee commercial development and marketing for We R Interactive. Specifically, he is charged with driving user numbers for We R Interactives’ product portfolio, bringing in new brand partners and driving new revenue streams by taking its products across multiple platforms including mobile, tablet, IPTV and new broadcast formats.

As Head of Corporate and Business Development at Channel 4 Whitehead was charged with driving new revenue opportunities for the broadcaster – across e-commerce, mobile operators, publishers, video on-demand platforms and pay-tv operators. In addition, he was responsible for the company’s commercial growth strategy, covering partnerships and investment activity. During his six year tenure he negotiated the deal with Google to distribute Channel 4 programmes on YouTube and launched a new mobile service with Orange and Universal.

Prior to this Whitehead was Channel Development Manager for BSkyB which saw him responsible for relationships with 3rd party channels and driving revenue from commercial partnerships with other broadcasters. Whitehead’s career in digital started in 1999 when he was General Manager for Excite@Home, Sydney.

We R Interactives’ first game, I AM PLAYR – the first ever online game that lets users play the life of a professional footballer launched officially in October 2011 after a successful beta phase and has amassed more than 1.4m user installs and more than 550k regular monthly players. Nike is the games’ principle brand partner, Red Bull is its energy drink and Alfa is the sponsor of the games’ fictional club, River Park FC. 

I AM PLAYR has established a flourishing virtual economy with Red Bull selling more than 1 million cans in the game and powering 32 million training drills to date. In addition, more than 300, 000 pairs of Nike boots have been purchased and users have watched more than 19 years of Nike-branded video.

Whitehead said of joining We R Interactive, “Social gaming is booming and with a number of exciting new titles in development in the sport and entertainment space I’m looking forward to growing the global footprint for We R Interactives’ portfolio. We have grown a large monetised global audience and at the same time created a proven new digital advertising platform, I’ll be working with brands to help them exploit it further.”

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