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Sky’s head of UK operations van Rooyen adds Germany and Italy to role

Pay-television broadcaster Sky has extended the remit of Stephen van Rooyen, its head of UK operations, to encompass its German and Italian operations.

Van Rooyen becomes chief executive for UK and Europe, with the heads of Sky Deutschland and Sky Italia reporting into him.

Andrea Zappia, who currently runs the German and Italian operations, has been appointed CEO of new markets and businesses.

Sky’s owner, US media giant Comcast, made the changes to ensure its product development capability is better aligned across its markets.

The re-organisation could encourage co-ordinated sports-rights negotiations across the three territories where rights deals cycles coincide. An example of this was seen last year when Sky conducted pan-European talks with the IMG agency for its successful acquisition of golf’s PGA Championships in the UK, Germany and Italy for the 2019-23 cycle.

Last month, Sky UK announced that Barney Francis, its long-serving head of sports, is to leave the company.