Wayne Dunsford, Director of Channels, BBC Worldwide, has announced that he will step down from his post at the end of February.
Wayne moved to his current role in 1998 from European Channel Management Limited* where he was General Manager. His sales and distribution lead at ECM had seen the rapid growth in distribution of BBC World to more than 35 million homes and the doubling of BBC Prime's subscription base.
As Director of Channels, Wayne has led business development, sales, marketing, programming and all operational aspects of BBC Worldwide's channels business.
He has seen BBC Prime, subtitled in 12 languages, launch beyond its traditional European base into Africa, the Middle East and Asia (including Hong Kong, Singapore, Thailand, Japan and Korea), with over 24 million global subscribers.
Under Wayne's leadership, in 2001 BBC Prime was the first of BBC Worldwide's channels to deliver a profit.
He also oversaw the launch in 2002 of the profitable BBC Food in Africa, subsequently launched in Scandinavia and across the Middle East.
Including the significant relay business of the BBC's domestic channels in Benelux, Wayne has secured more than a 70% increase in total channel sales and contribution in his area in the past five years alone.
Wayne said: "I have had an inspiring and exciting 17 years with BBC Worldwide. I have been fully involved in the development of BBC Prime and BBC Food and have worked on other channel assets and JVs witnessing the businesses' rapid and impressive growth first hand. I have also had the pleasure of working with an exceptional team throughout.
"BBC Worldwide's new channel business is now well placed to build on what has been achieved. I now want to explore other opportunities and to use my skills and experience more widely in the global market."
Darren Childs, BBC Worldwide's Managing Director, Global Channels, said: "Wayne has made an enormous contribution to BBC Worldwide's channel business over many years. He has been an excellent ambassador for us, forging close relationships with our customers around the world.
"We thank Wayne for his passion and commitment and wish him every success for the future."
* A joint venture company between BBC Worldwide, Pearson and Cox Entertainment which led the sales, marketing and distribution of BBC World and BBC Prime