- Hunter Paletsas will take on the group CFO role for the Motion Picture Association, replacing David England who served in the role for 12 years prior to his retirement this spring, the lobbying group said in a Thursday announcement.
- Paletsas, a veteran of Big Four accounting firm Deloitte and media and technology holding company GoDigital Media Group, will start in the CFO position effective July 24 and report directly to MPA’s CEO and Chairman Charles Rivkin, the company said.
- As CFO, he will oversee the MPA’s global financial and information technology operations from the company’s Los Angeles, California headquarters.
The MPA represents the interests of key players in the motion picture, television and media industries, including Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures, Netflix Studios, Paramount Pictures, and Sony Entertainment.
Prior to taking the top financial seat at the MPA, Paletsas served as CFO for GoDigital Media Group, a billion-dollar conglomerate which operates subsidiaries including Cinq Music, Latido Music, and YogaWorks. Paletsas served as group CFO for the conglomerate for six years, according to his LinkedIn profile. He also logged a five-year stint at accounting firm Deloitte, where he worked to offer finance transformation consulting services for financial leaders in the technology, media and entertainment sectors.
The newly-minted CFO will be taking MPA’s financial reins as the media and entertainment industry deals with sweeping challenges including inflation, the ongoing writers strike and the impact of emerging technologies such as generative AI. In May, European writers staged a protest outside the MPA’s European headquarters in Brussels in support of the Writer’s Guild of America strike where the MPA was holding an event for industry representatives, a report by Variety said.
The event was “the perfect opportunity to show our solidarity with our sister guild,” Gail Renard, treasurer for the Writers Guild of Great Britain (WGGB), said in a statement at the time, noting the MPA is “made up of some of the same companies” as the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, one of the organizations butting heads against the WGA.
The CFO swap also follows several other executive leadership appointments by the MPA as it seeks to expand across global markets including Latin America. In April, the company named Cesar Castillejos as VP of communication, public affairs and advocacy for its Latin American region, as well as the appointment of Carlos Monroy as advocacy director for Mexico, a move that comes as the region sees “enormous growth in its home/mobile and theatrical markets,” the company said in a release.
MPA member studios such as Netflix have turned their attention to the Latin American market as part of their global expansion strategies, with the studio originating its plan to crack down on password sharing in three Latin American countries last year, according to an April report by CNBC.
While paid memberships in the region dipped due to macroeconomic conditions, Netflix reported in its first quarter results, the company is moving forward with its plans to roll out paid sharing across other regions including the U.S., where it expects to see a pattern “similar to what we’ve seen in Latin America, with engagement growth resuming over time as we continue to improve our programming and borrowers sign-up for their own accounts,” the company said in a letter to shareholders.
MPA declined to comment beyond the details included in its Thursday press release.