Amazon Prime Video recently announced a restructuring of its international business, which will lead to content and staff reductions in the Middle East and North Africa. This move is aimed at prioritising European originals.
The streaming giant may halt the greenlighting of new local originals in sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East, and North Africa for the foreseeable future, although the confirmed shows from the MENA region, such as LOL ZA and Ebuka Turns Up Africa, will remain unaffected. While Prime Video will maintain operations in these territories, there could be potential redundancies in the local teams.
The European team will be divided into two entities, both reporting to Prime Video Europe VP Barry Furlong. The first, called EU Established, will concentrate on major markets like the UK, Germany, Italy, France, and Spain and will be led by the country director for France, Brigitte Ricou-Bellan. The second, EU Emerging, will be overseen by Ritchie Ordonez, director of Benelux, CEE (Central and Eastern Europe), and Turkey, with a focus on expanding businesses in Benelux, the Nordics, and CEE.
The impact of the European restructuring on potential layoffs within Prime Video’s European teams remains uncertain. Additionally, the company aims to fill a new executive role, the director of EU content and programming strategy, tasked with collaborating with US and international colleagues on the Amazon MGM Studios pipeline.
Furlong said, “We’ve been carefully looking at our business to ensure we prioritise our resources on what matters most to customers. I have carefully evaluated our regional structure and adjusted our operating model to rebalance and pivot our resources to focus on the areas that drive the highest impact and long-term success. I have listened and considered the feedback received across the teams over the past 12 months; I believe these changes will improve the operational running of our multi-territory business and allow us to be more agile and focused.”