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BBC taps Scannell to manage U.S. network

June 2, 2010 | 11:31 am

BBC Worldwide America has tapped cable veteran Herb Scannell as its new president.

Scannell, who was president of Nickelodeon during its boom years in the 1990s and later rose to vice chairman of MTV Networks, succeeds Garth Ancier, who left in the BBC in March.

BBC America is the BBC's U.S. cable network and is in about 67 million homes. It primarily carries programs from the BBC's U.K. channels, but it also buys content from the BBC's competitors there such as ITV.

BBC America is starting to dip its toe into creating original content for this market. Last week it said it was making a U.S. version of "Come Dine With Me," a cooking game show in which chefs compete for the title of "ultimate dinner party host."

In a statement, Scannell said the BBC is "a world renowned brand with a great portfolio of businesses in the U.S. that have tremendous prospects."

Besides content acquisitions and day-to-day management of the channel, Scannell will also have oversight over advertising sales for the channel.

-- Joe Flint