Warner Village hires RAB head

Warner Village Cinemas has restructured its marketing department and appointed former Radio Advertising Bureau (RAB) marketing director Piers Skinner to head day-to-day operations.

Skinner, who takes the newly created title of marketing manager, will have responsibility for the media budget and managing all marketing agencies. Sales and marketing director Sarah Kelly is to concentrate on long-term strategic brand planning.

Skinner has held a number of positions since leaving his role as senior marketing manager at Blockbuster including joining RAB in August 2000. He left RAB in March 2001 and then provided maternity leave cover for the head of strategy planning position at Capital Radio. Recently, he has been acting as consultant to the video distribution arm of Helkon SK. Film Distribution.

He says he has no immediate plans to review the Warner Village agencies. Full service agency Alcone handles advertising and Alchemy provides direct marketing. MediaCom handles media planning and buying. The chain spent &£1m on advertising in the UK in the year to June.

The cinema chain has just completed work on its last UK multiplex, which will open in Edinburgh in November. The opening will bring the chain to 42 sites, of which 14 lie within the M25.

Skinner says that the multiplexes have entered a mature phase where profits will come less from new sites, and more from encouraging cinema-goers to spend more.

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