ITV poaches Channel 4's Bala for top data role
ITV has hired Sanjeevan Bala as its new group chief data & AI officer, starting May this year.
Bala is currently head of data science at rival UK broadcaster Channel 4, a role he has held since March 2017.
Prior to this, Bala spent six years as the broadcaster's head of planning and analytics, and previously held roles at PwC, Dunnhumby and a number of Silicon Valley start-ups.
In his new role, he will lead the transformation of ITV's data and AI strategy, raise the overall data capability and accelerate the adoption of AI to fuel growth.
He will report into chief marketing officer and director of direct-to-consumer Rufus Radcliffe, who commented that accelerating ITV's data capabilities is "at the heart" of its 'More Than TV' transformation strategy.
"Sanjeevan has a proven track record of using data to drive commercial value, and we look forward to him building upon the foundations already established to take ITV's data strategy to the next level," Radcliffe said.
ITV CEO Carolyn McCall unveiled the broadcaster's transformation strategy in July 2018. The strategy included plans to invest in ITV Hub, ITV's on-demand streaming service, and its direct to consumer business, including live events and competitions.
Meanwhile, Bala added: “I am thrilled to be joining ITV - it’s a great opportunity to experiment by developing data products that will create value across the business."
"Blending human creativity with machine intelligence will allow ITV to navigate a clear path through the fourth industrial revolution.”