HBO Max is expanding in Turkey as an extension of its broader rollout across 21 new European territories. It has appointed Baris Zavaroglu as director general for the territory, which is a global TV powerhouse.
Zavaroglu, who joins the WarnerMedia streaming service from Turkcell’s OTT and pay-TV business TV Plus where he was general manager, will be in charge of leading its direct-to-consumer business once the Turkish launch takes place later this year.
Zavaroglu also held previous positions as CMO for Fox Turkey and worked for Disney in a senior management role for Eastern Europe and the West Asia and North Africa region, also known as the Middle East and North Africa.
In Turkey, HBO Max will be competing with Netflix, which has been producing Turkish originals, and local streamers such as BluTV. As such, it will be interesting to see how the platform shapes its own local production strategy.
Zavaroglu in overseeing the launch and growth of HBO Max in Turkey — which is aligned to the wider strategy of HBO Max in the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region — will report to Christina Sulebakk, general manager for HBO Max EMEA.
“Baris joins us at an important time as we prepare to launch and grow in a strategically important market,” said Sulebakk in a statement. “His expertise and leadership will prove invaluable as we look to establish and build rapidly in the country as part of our phased roll out in Europe.”
Zavaroglu commented: “HBO Max is generating considerable momentum as it rolls out around the world with a deep and diverse content offering that is unlike anything else on the planet.”
HBO Max is now live in 46 territories in the Americas and Europe. This year the service will roll out in a further 21 European territories, including Turkey.