Mattel, the toy giant behind beloved brands like Fisher-Price, Barbie, Hot Wheels, and Thomas & Friends, has added two key executives to Mattel Creations — its theatrical, television, and digital content division.
Cheryl Gresham, a former Taco Bell media exec, has been named VP of global media and marketing integration, and Justin Richardson has been named VP of global content distribution and strategy. Both Gresham and Richardson will report to Mattel’s chief content officer Catherine Balsam-Schwaber.
In her new role, Gresham will lead Mattel’s global media team, where she will be charged with forging relationships with major media partners and maximizing Mattel’s investments in consumer media, the company said in a release. She will be based in Mattel’s El Segundo, Calif., offices. Richardson, for his part, will oversee global content distribution from popular brands like Thomas & Friends, Barbie, Monster High, Hot Wheels, American Girl, and Ever After High. Mattel has distribution teams in the U.S., Asia, Europe, Russia, the Middle East, and Africa, according to the company, and Richardson will be based in London.
“Mattel Creations has developed significantly since we announced the new centralized division at [content market] MIPTV earlier this year, and I am thrilled to welcome these leaders as we enter the next stage of our evolution and enter a very busy MIPCOM,” Balsam-Schwaber said in a statement.
Gresham formerly led overall media strategy for Taco Bell National, including digital and social investment, and has also held similar roles at communications companies Initiative Media Agency and Davis Elen Advertising, as well as Coca-Cola North America. Richardson most recently worked for Japanese mobile phone operator NTT Docomo. Before that, he spent seven years at Warner Bros., working on integrated content distribution and marketing strategies for entertainment brands like Harry Potter, Batman, Superman, and Scooby Doo.