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About The Speaker

Kaz Sasajima

Sumitomo Corporation of Americas Sr. Director, Media Unit (July 2017 – Present) • Launched Media Business Unit as the first international media dept. based in Los Angeles, among Sumitomo’s international offices outside of Japan, to ensure growth room of media field, mainly focusing “Digital”. • Acquired minority share of The Chernin Group, founded and led by former COO of News Corp. Peter Chernin, which covers both traditional major movie productions for FOX and acquisitions of leading digital assets, like the largest MCN, Fullscreen,the largest Anime Streaming Operator, Crunchyroll and a major sports blog, Barstool Sports. With those assets, contributions with Sumitomo’s media assets has been creating. • Launched Mobile Anime Game Publishing business with Crunchyroll, and acquired 1st title from Gree and 2 nd title from Ambition, which has generated $10mil level as gross revenue from 1 st year. • Leading investments in ventures in digital field, including video network with AI/Machine Learning technology, Entertainment AI and digital music label, 88 Rising. Sumitomo Corp. (Conglomerate Trading House) Manager, Broadcast Media Team (July 2013 – June 2017) • Developed international investments and contents distributions (mostly w/government subsidies) as Head of business development team for Media Industry, • Project Highlight(1): Acquisition for SDI Media, the world largest localizing production house based in Los Angeles, by success club house auction, upon setting up a consortium Imagica (the Japanese largest post production house) and Cool Japan Fund (Japanese government fund). • Project Highlight(2): Launched a new venture to invest in Japanese Anime Production Committee with the largest Anime OTT Player, Crunchyroll. The venture has secured international distribution rights of approx. 30 Japanese Anime series, with investments in Production. • Project Highlight(3): Launched and run branded Japanese Anime series with Japanese major Anime players, like TMS and Shinei-Doga, called “Anime-no-me”, featuring Sweetness and Lighting, The Laughing Salesman, Elegant Yokai Apartment Life. J SPORTS Corp. (Sports Channel) CEO and Representative Director (March 2010 – June 2013) • Managed the largest Sports Channel in Japan, with running 4 x 24hr linear channels. • Highlight Project: Migration to BS Satellite Platform, wider distribution platform, with success to acquire 4 x BS Broadcasting licenses on 2010 just after confirmed record profit (EBIT), refreshing branding, production facilities and play-back/out facilities, over earthquake period on 2011 and 2012. J SPORTS Broadcasting Corp. (Sports Channel) Division Manager, Broadcasting Division and Director of BOD (August 2008 – March 2010) • Managed rights acquisition, production and programming as Head of Programming of the largest Sports Channel in Japan • Reviewed and strengthened acquisition and programming policy, upon extra live coverage (total more than 400), extra acquisitions for MLB, refreshing English Premier League coverage etc. • Served as Director of BOD at Japan Satellite TV Association. Sumitomo Corp. (Conglomerate Trading House) Manager, Business Develop Team (June 2005 – July 2008) • Created synergies among Sumitomo’s media assets, including Cable/Satellite TV Channels, Movie Production House and Cinema Multiplex. • Managed investment performances in Cable/Satellite TV Channels. Jupiter TV Co. Ltd. (Multi Channel Cable/Satellite TV Operator) GM, Business Development Dept. (October 2002 – July 2005) • Developed the first Japanese IPTV platform with NTT Plala and Cable VOD platform with J:COM, • Acquired “Home Channel” from Misawa and changed to “LaLa TV”, and minority shares of Sony Pictures’ AXN Japan. • Managed DTH (DBS) channel packaging. • Served as Director of BOD of On-Line TV, AXN Japan and Reality TV Japan, in addition to Deputy GM at Japan Satellite TV Association. J Sky Sports Inc. (Sports Channel) GM, Programming (April 2000 – September 2001) • Managed rights acquisition (International/Domestic) and programming for 3 x 24hrs linear channels, including developing programming strategy. J Sports Inc. (Sports Channel) GM, Programming (February 1998 – March 2000) • Managed rights acquisition, programming and production for 1 x 24hrs sports channel. • Proposed to a merger project to competitive sports channels, and compiled a business plan for the merger. Jupiter Golf Network Co. Ltd.(Golf Channel) GM, Programming (July 1996 – February 1998) • Managed rights acquisition, programming and production for 1 x 24hrs Golf specialized channel. • Proposed and managed minority investments from Major Golf Companies (Dunlop/Mizuno/Bridgestone) for launching. Sumitomo Corp. (Conglomerate Trading House) (April 1990 – June 1996) • Distributed International Sports contents to NHK(BS), GAORA, Independent FTA stations and Video packaging companies domestically, Japanese Golf Tournaments to ESPN in US, and Japanese Baseball to STAR TV @APAC. • Managed productions, including Localize, for contents distributions.