Penguin Random House Children’s appoints new commercial director

Published on: 15th October 2021

David Sprei will be joining Penguin Random House Children’s as commercial director for Penguin Ventures, reporting into Francesca Dow, Penguin Ventures MD.

In this newly-created role, David will lead the Penguin Ventures business to further growth, working in close partnership with Susan Bolsover, Global Licensing and Consumer Products director, and the Penguin Ventures team. Susan Bolsover will report into David.

David joins from his previous role as director International Business Development at ViacomCBS Consumer Products, focusing on new innovative & non-traditional partnerships across the portfolio. Prior to this, David has held commercial and partnership roles at Viacom Velocity (MTV Europe), Instrumental and TBWA\Stream, London.

Penguin Ventures is a separate business within Penguin Random House Children’s which manages and exploits a portfolio of literary brands and characters, most notably Peter Rabbit, The Snowman and Spot, focusing on licensing and consumer products, retail activations, theatrical, exhibitions and commercial partnership strategies. In the UK, Penguin Ventures’ most recent successes include a multi-year partnership with Cadburys as well as a global collection with Cath Kidston, both for Peter Rabbit. The team also created a fashion and digital collaboration with Barbour for The Snowman, expanding upon Raymond Briggs’ timeless story via an innovative ad campaign, and was responsible for the UK, Australian and Japanese licensing programme for Peter Rabbit and Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway.

Francesca Dow, managing director, Penguin Random House Children’s, said: “Penguin Ventures is a successful, multi-award winning and profitable global business, respected by our partners and licensees around the world. To date, Susan has brilliantly led and managed our strong licensing business and excellent team. Now that Ventures wholly manages the licensing for Classic Peter Rabbit in-house, we are excited about exploring new and uncharted opportunities. We believe we are at an early stage in Penguin Ventures’ potential and in his role David will help take us to the next stage of growth and commercial success. I’m impressed by David’s entrepreneurial mindset and look forward to working with him, together with Susan and our Ventures team, as we explore new UK and global opportunities for growth and innovation, explore new IP development and investment and ensure the long-term health and success of our incredible brands. Internally, David will in this new role act as a central commercial unifier for our owned brands, working in close partnership with our Brand and Publishing teams.”

David says: “I am truly excited to work with the world class Penguin Random House Children’s portfolio to drive commercial growth across new and existing markets and lines of business. Working with Susan and the Ventures team, we will continue to build on previous success, explore new ways to tell the story, and continue to connect and engage our fans from yesterday, today and for tomorrow, helping to future proof our audiences for years to come.”

David Sprei joins Penguin Random House Children’s on 18th October.


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