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Amazon's Michael Paul joins MLB's video streaming service BAMTech

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MUMBAI: Amazon’s digital media executive Michael Paull has been hired to lead the $3 billion video-streaming company BAMTech. The announcement was made by Major League Baseball Advanced Media, which sold one-third of BAMTech to Walt Disney in August. Disney bought a 33 per cent stake in BAMTech for $1 billion Baseball still owns a majority of BAMTech. Disney in three years will have the option to take a controlling stake.

Paull is due to take up his new role next month and is expected to oversee Disney-owned sports network ESPN's upcoming subscription streaming service. He will relocate from Seattle to New York and report directly to BAMTech’s board of directors. He replaces Bob Bowman, who will remain MLB's president of business and media. Bowman will also serve on the seven-member BAMTech board of directors, along with Rob Manfred, ESPN President John Skipper, Disney executive Kevin Mayer and commissioner of the National Hockey League Gary Bettman, which is also an investor in the company.

"Michael will deliver on the incredible potential and promise this venture has for building powerful viewing experiences for its clients and their customers," Manfred said in a statement.

For the last three years, Paull has been vice president of digital video for Amazon Inc. He oversaw the introduction of Prime Video and significantly increased the production of original series and films. Prior to joining Amazon, Paull also held leadership positions at Sony Pictures, Sony Music, Fox Entertainment and Time Warner.

BAMTech started out as the interactive media and internet company of Major League Baseball and is now jointly owned by Major League Baseball Advanced Media (MLBAM), The Walt Disney Company and the National Hockey League (NHL). It claims to have 7.5 million global paid subscribers through OTT products for sports, news and entertainment partners including HBO Now, the NHL, MLB, the PGA Tour, WWE Network, Riot Games/League of Legends, and Ice Network.

Through a partnership with Discovery, BAMTech also jointly formed BAMTech Europe to move into this market and provide technology services to a broad set of clients across the continent, including Eurosport’s digital products.

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