Channel 4 has officially begun a new era. In October, the first wave of staff started to make themselves comfortable in temporary offices in Leeds city centre. They are awaiting the completion of a refit of the Grade II-listed former Majestic cinema and nightclub, where the broadcaster’s national headquarters will be based.
The much-heralded move out to the regions is the most visible of many changes at Channel 4, not least the appointment from September of Zaid Al-Qassab as the broadcaster’s new CMO.
Tempted away from BT by the lure of Channel 4’s digital acceleration programme, the brainchild of CEO Alex Mahon, Al-Qassab is already enjoying the excitement bubbling up around the broadcaster’s relocation outside the capital.
“There’s a great sense of energy,” he says. “It’s really given a new lease of life to a part of our mission, which is representing all of Britain. Being somewhere other than London is a good way of doing that.”
Al-Qassab, who will be divvying his time between the Leeds HQ and London offices, is keen to get cracking on a new marketing phase for the channel centred around the Digital Creative Unit (DCU), which is being introduced to produce content specifically for the broadcaster’s various social platforms.
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