9 Story Distribution
Experts in Children’s Programming
Children’s programming represents the vast majority of our content. Over the past decade, we have built extensive, long-running relationships with every children’s buyer around the world. 9 Story has been ranked in the top 5 on Kidscreen’s HOT50 list of top distributors within the kids and family space since 2014.
As a company with more than 1000 employees, we have the resources to enable our sales directors to focus on doing what they do best: finding the best homes for our content. From a highly experienced business affairs team to a fully-fledged marketing and PR team, we have the bench strength in house to make a show a global hit.
Global Sales Team
Our headquarters is based in Dublin, and our multilingual sales team is strategically located in Dublin, Toronto and New York. This enables us to attend all major markets, and have close and regular contact with clients in every corner of the globe.
We believe the best strategy for a brand is to manage all rights in one place. We maximize results by developing a unified approach across distribution and consumer products.
As Chief Strategy Officer of 9 Story Media Group, Natalie Osborne oversees strategic partnerships, worldwide sales, acquisitions, consumer products and marketing. Natalie has been a significant driver of the company’s dramatic growth over the last decade, helping transform 9 Story into one of the world’s leading independent producers and distributors of children’s content. Upon joining the company in 2006, Natalie founded the global distribution division, building it into a multi-million dollar, internationally recognized enterprise. Her executive producer credits include BBC’s Wibbly Pig, the live-action film Harriet Spy: Blog Wars for Disney, and most recently, the Netflix Original holiday special, Angela’s Christmas.
Prior to joining 9 Story, Natalie served as Vice President of Acquisitions for Universal Pictures based in London where she initiated the acquisition and production of new IP. Natalie previously held the position of Vice President of Worldwide Children’s Programming for NBC Universal, where she managed the worldwide sales and marketing rollout of the studio’s children’s programs. Prior to her time in London, Natalie was based in New York as Director of International Sales for film company Fox Lorber.
Natalie is passionate about the media and entertainment sector and has been a leader in the industry for the last 20 years. She is a voting member of the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television, and an elected Member of the International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences. An ardent champion of women’s career advancement, Natalie has served on the board of directors of Women in Film and Television’s Toronto Chapter (WIFT-T) and as Chair of The Foundation WIFT-T’s charitable arm, and is a member of International Women’s Forum Canada. In 2016, Natalie was named as a WXN Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 Award Winner.
An international media professional with over 25 years’ experience, as Senior Vice President, Distribution & Acquisitions, Alix Wiseman is responsible for heading up 9 Story’s sales operations and sourcing 3rd party content from across the globe. Her remit also includes securing financing for 9 Story’s new IP’s and working closely with the development team to shape them for the international market. Alix joined 9 Story from Aardman Animations, where she set up the studio’s dedicated distribution division as Head of Sales & Acquisitions in 2006. While there, she worked with her team to secure partnerships for Shaun the Sheep in 170 countries and drive new brand extensions for the studio’s Oscar® winning stop-frame classics such as Wallace & Gromit and Creature Comforts. At Aardman, Alix also served as Executive Producer on Shaun the Sheep Series 5 and the Shaun the Sheep special The Farmer’s Llamas for which she won an International Emmy® award for Best Animation in 2017.
Alix started her career at Channel 4 Television selling over 3000 hours of programming across factual, animation, comedy, drama and feature films. Following her passion for animation, she moved into children’s content, joining newly formed Entertainment Rights Plc (since acquired by Classic Media and then DreamWorks) where she drove the international roll-out of shows such as Postman Pat, Little Red Tractor, the Barbie TV movies and Transformers across the globe. Alix is both a UK & US national and was raised in Latin America.
Vice President of Distribution Stephen S. Kelley is a multilingual distribution and marketing executive with over 20 years of experience in the sales, acquisition, marketing and development of television programming for the international marketplace. With well-honed and seasoned management and administrative skills, he has a proven track record in contract negotiation, revenue generation and project management. He has also had considerable success in closing program deals with traditionally challenging territories, marking his early career with precedent-setting sales in the United States, France Germany and Latin America.
Prior to joining 9 Story, Kelley was Senior Manager at CBC International Sales, where he was in charge of international and domestic distribution of the extensive CBC catalogue, specializing in quality drama, documentary and lifestyle series such as The Border, Heartland, Nature of Things and The Fifth Estate.
Previously Kelley was Head of International Sales and Acquisitions at Portfolio Entertainment Inc, a Toronto-based producer of award-winning children’s and family television series such as Groundling Marsh, RoboRoach and Carl². At Portfolio, he was responsible for building and marketing a catalogue of over 700 half-hours of television programming across broadcast, HV/DVD and mobile platforms.
Kelley has also served as Vice-President of Sales and Marketing for Salter Street Films International, producers of such award-winning television series as This Hour Has 22 Minutes, Made in Canada, Emily of New Moon as well as Michael Moore’s satirical series The Awful Truth. In his position, he achieved many firsts for the producer and distributor, including entry into broadcast markets in the U.S. and France.
He began his career as Head of International Sales for Catalyst Distribution and its parent company Gullane Entertainment. In his post, he oversaw selected foreign territories for the producer of hit family series such as Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends, Shining Time Station and Eckhart. At Catalyst, his aggressive approach to international program sales was reflected in the distribution and licensing agreements he forged in Germany, France, Italy and Latin America.
Federico Vargas is an established media executive, with over 15 years of experience in the entertainment distribution industry. Specializing in global content sales, Federico has a proven track record generating revenues across multiple platforms. Federico has an extensive background in all facets of distribution, having previously managed sales, operations, and acquisitions. Fluent in both in English and Spanish, he has developed a significant expertise working with broadcasters in the Spanish speaking world. As Vice President, Distribution, Federico is responsible for maximizing sales of 9 Story’s catalogue across Australasia, Latin America, U.S. Hispanic, Iberia, and the Middle East markets.
Prior to joining 9 Story, Federico spearheaded sales at CCI Entertainment where he was responsible for generating global revenues for the children’s, lifestyle, and movie catalogues. He successfully generated sales for CCI’s third party distribution assets, including series like Guess How Much I Love You, Joe & Jack, and Finding Stuff Out. Federico played a key role selling the Artzooka! brand internationally, brokering local productions for Brazil and another for Latin America and U.S. Hispanic markets. Federico was instrumental in the global success of the Candice Olson lifestyle brands – Divine Design and Candice Tells All, closing multi territory deals in Europe, Asia, and Latin America. During his tenure at CCI, Federico also served as Manager of Acquisitions, attending film festivals and bolstering the family movie catalogue.
Federico earned his B.A.A from the RTA School of Media at Ryerson University. He is also a graduate of the Canadian Film Centre.
Kristin Lecour has been in the entertainment industry for over 10 years with a focus on multiplatform brand development, licensing and corporate marketing. With her wide-ranging experience across several marketing disciplines, Kristin brings a unique perspective on building brands, through development, launch and ongoing management. As Vice President, Consumer Products & Distribution, Kristin is responsible for securing and managing brand licenses for the company’s key brands around the globe.
Kristin began her career at TrojanOne, a national, full service marketing agency, where she was focused on brand activation for a wide range of clients including Nike, Johnson & Johnson, Coke and HBC. She joined CCI Entertainment in 2006, eventually leading its Licensing and Marketing division. While at CCI, Kristin was instrumental in the international success of the evergreen brand Harry and His Bucket Full of Dinosaurs, with over 1 million books sold in over 14 languages, in-school programs in the U.S. and Asia, QSR promotions worldwide, live show tours in over 10 markets, and a Fisher-Price® master toy license.
Candice Chambers is a seasoned television executive with over 12 years of experience in digital distribution, acquisitions, sales, and production. As Senior Director of Digital Distribution and Acquisitions, Candice oversees 9 Story’s digital business, and handles content acquisitions with third party producers. Prior to joining 9 Story in 2011, Candice held various positions at Warner Bros International Television Distribution across business administration and sales. Candice also held prior positions at Corus Entertainment within programming (W Network) and production (CMT).
Elianne Friend has worked in the media industry for over 10 years. As Senior Director of Digital Distribution at 9 Story Media Group, Elianne is responsible for leading the company’s YouTube business as well as expanding distribution across major digital platforms worldwide, including Netflix, Hulu and Amazon. Prior to joining 9 Story Media Group, Elianne was a producer at Bloomberg Television in New York City, helping to create its two prime-time and flagship programs. Elianne also worked at CNN during the 2008 presidential election.
Elianne was born and raised in New York and holds an MBA in Media, Entertainment & Technology as well as in Management from New York University’s Stern School of Business. She graduated Magna Cum Laude with a BA in Political Science from Barnard College, Columbia University. As it relates to community work, Elianne is a graduate of UJA-Toronto’s Joshua Institute, a selective philanthropic leadership program. Elianne is currently a member of Women in Film and Television – Toronto and also sits on the Arts and Culture Committee at UJA – Toronto.