ESPN Hands International Digital Media To Rees

The ball for ESPN’s international digital media activities is being passed from Tom Gleeson to Arne Rees.

Rees, previously VP for ESPN (NYSE: DIS) Inc in the US, is becoming international digital media VP for ESPN International, overseeing ESPNCricinfo, ESPNScrum, ESPNF1, ESPNSoccernet and other properties.

Gleeson, who had led the cricket site Cricinfo through its acquisition by ESPN, is now consulting for ESPN and working with Rees on the transition.

Amongst ESPN’s most prestigious overseas TV rights is 23 live matches in the UK of England’s Premier League soccer. It also holds mobile highlights rights to all the tournament’s games.

The app through which it exploits those highlights rights, ESPN Goals, was last year switched from paid to ad-supported free by the broadcaster, which also introduced a post-match live web discussion show. ESPN Goals has passed two million downloads.

Rees is a former strategy head of the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) and will work from New York.