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Press Release

January 9, 2019


Byron Allen’s Entertainment Studios (ES), which owns The Weather Channel, is proud to announce that Namon Jones has been hired as Vice President of Digital Advertising Sales for ES Digital Group. Jones will now be responsible for overseeing all sales activity for ES Digital Group, with a focus on multicultural agencies for TheGrio and general digital agencies for Local Now and all ES digital media.

“I am excited to have Namon join our team,” said Barbara Bekkedahl, SVP and Head of Ad Sales for Entertainment Studios Networks and The Weather Channel. “As our digital media portfolio grows, Namon elevates our capabilities with his extensive experience and proven success; he adds the leadership to our team that will drive innovation for Byron Allen's growing stable of digital media platforms."

In addition to The Weather Channel, the Entertainment Studios Networks portfolio includes seven 24-hour HD television networks serving nearly 160 million subscribers: PETS.TV, COMEDY.TV, RECIPE.TV, CARS.TV, ES.TV, MYDESTINATION.TV, and JUSTICECENTRAL.TV, as well as the streaming service Local Now. The Weather Channel is the go-to source for up-to-the-minute information and in-depth analysis before, during, and after severe weather events. The Weather Channel is America’s number one weather and news network and the trusted leader in live weather news and severe weather coverage, producing the most comprehensive live coverage of any media outlet. With trusted meteorologists who analyze, forecast, and report accurate and reliable weather news, the network’s expertise is unrivaled.

Prior to this role, Jones was with BET Networks (a Subsidiary of Viacom, Inc.), where he served as Director of East Coast Digital Ad Sales in New York. Jones earned a bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Mass Communications from Norfolk State University.  


About Weather Group / Local Now

Weather Group is the parent company of The Weather Channel television network, Weatherscan, Local Now, and Pattern. For more than 35 years, The Weather Channel has been the leader in severe weather coverage, providing the most comprehensive analysis of any media outlet and serving as the nation’s only 24-hour source of national storm coverage. For eight years in a row, Harris Poll has ranked The Weather Channel as the “TV News Brand of the Year.” With trusted meteorologists who analyze, forecast and report the weather - its expertise is unrivaled. Local Now is a streaming service, powered by The Weather Channel and content partners, and delivers real-time, hyper-local news, weather, traffic, sports, and lifestyle information. With unique technology that transmits localized information to hundreds of markets across the United States, Local Now delivers the same information seen in a 30 to 60 minute local news broadcast segment, on-demand and in a fraction of the time. Pattern is a new platform that delivers mobile-first content directly to Twitter users in a new and innovative way at any day and any time - storm coverage, changing climate, weather science explainers and the coolest, most beautiful places on Earth as created by weather. For more information visit: www.weathergroup.com

About Entertainment Studios

Chairman and CEO Byron Allen founded Entertainment Studios in 1993. Headquartered in Los Angeles, it has offices in New York, Chicago, Atlanta, Denver, and Raleigh.  Entertainment Studios owns eight 24-hour HD television networks serving nearly 160 million subscribers: THE WEATHER CHANNEL, PETS.TV, COMEDY.TV, RECIPE.TV, CARS.TV, ES.TV, MYDESTINATION.TV, and JUSTICE CENTRAL.TV. The company also produces, distributes, and sells advertising for 41 television programs, making it one of the largest independent producers/distributors of first-run syndicated television programming for broadcast television stations. With a library of over 5,000 hours of owned content across multiple genres, Entertainment Studios provides video content to broadcast television stations, cable television networks, mobile devices, multimedia platforms, and the World Wide Web.  Our mission is to provide excellent programming to our viewers, online users, and Fortune 500 advertising partners.

Entertainment Studios Motion Pictures is a full-service, theatrical motion picture distribution company specializing in wide release commercial content. ESMP released 2017's highest-grossing independent movie, the shark thriller 47 METERS DOWN, which grossed over $44.3 million. In 2018, ESMP also released the critically-acclaimed and commercially successful Western HOSTILES and the historic mystery-thriller CHAPPAQUIDDICK. Upcoming releases include the Keanu Reeves sci-fi thriller REPLICAS, the Jeremy Renner/Heidi Klum-starring animated feature ARCTIC DOGS, the John Krasinski/Emily Blunt-starring animated feature ANIMAL CRACKERS, and Joe Carnahan's Mel Gibson/Naomi Watts starring action-thriller BOSS LEVEL. The digital distribution unit of Entertainment Studios Motion Pictures, Freestyle Digital Media, is a premiere multi-platform distributor with direct partnerships across all major cable, digital and streaming platforms. Capitalizing on a robust infrastructure, proven track record and a veteran sales team, Freestyle Digital Media is a true home for independent films.

In 2016, Entertainment Studios purchased TheGrio, a digital video-centric news community platform devoted to providing African-Americans with compelling stories and perspectives currently underrepresented in existing national news outlets. TheGrio features aggregated and original video packages, news articles and opinion pieces on topics that include breaking news, politics, health, business and entertainment. Originally launched in 2009, the platform was then purchased by NBC News in 2010. The digital platform remains focused on curating exciting digital content and currently has more than 20 million annual visitors.

For more information, visit: www.entertainmentstudios.com, www.freestyledigitalmedia.tv, www.thegrio.com