By Richard Middleton
WarnerMedia has hired Jason Monteiro from MENA streamer Shahid to lead its direct-to-consumer operations across Southeast Asia, including the transition of HBO Go to become HBO Max.
Monteiro becomes GM of HBO Max Southeast Asia, Hong Kong and Taiwan with immediate effect, linking up with fellow Shahid alum Johannes Larcher, who leads HBO Max outside the US.
He will be responsible for the day-to-day operations of WarnerMedia’s direct-to-consumer business and is based in Singapore, with a remit to oversee the existing HBO Go streaming service – and the eventual launch of HBO Max – in the region.
Monteiro was most recently director of AVOD at Shahid, responsible for the general management of the streaming platform’s free tier, covering user growth and engagement, as well as overseeing the content catalogue.
Prior to that, he was GM of Indonesia and Malaysia for iflix, the Asia-based streaming service that was acquired by Tencent in China in 2020.
Monteiro will temporarily report into Larcher until a new MD for the broader INSEAK region (India, Southeast Asia and Korea) is appointed at HBO Max.
HBO Go waits for Max
No dates have yet been confirmed for the arrival of HBO Max in Asia, where WarnerMedia remains focused on the growth of existing streamer brand HBO Go. It recently secured the pipeline of all new Warner Bros. Pictures shows 45 days after their exclusive theatrical window, with Dune and The Matrix Resurrections set for the service.
HBO Go also continues to order its own regional originals with shows such as Who’s By Your Side, in addition to offering HBO shows such as Succession, The Vampire Diaries, and HBO Max originals including the rebooted Gossip Girl.
Larcher said: “Jason arrives at HBO Max with a proven track record of building and growing subscription services across Asia and other important global markets. He’s a passionate leader known for building and inspiring high-performing teams, and I’m eager to see his leadership in action as he steps into his new role today.”
Monteiro said: “It’s going to be such a thrill to work with the people across WarnerMedia to bring the likes of Game Of Thrones, Harry Potter, DC, Warner Bros., HBO favorites, new Max Originals and many more, to the viewers in Southeast Asia.”
HBO Max launched in the US in May 2020, before starting its international roll-out last year by launching in 39 countries across Latin America and the Caribbean in the summer.
It is now also available in a large swathe of Europe, although pre-existing output deals – with firms such as Sky in the UK – continue to disrupt its expansion into some major markets, although Larcher told DTVE sister title TBI last year that his company hoped that would change “sooner” than some might expect.