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Gaumont Animation Adds Two Execs to Team

Karen Vermeulen and Cyril Le Pesant have joined the Gaumont Animation team.

Gaumont is expanding its global animation and family efforts in Europe with the addition of Karen Vermeulen and Cyril Le Pesant.

Vermeulen, who will join in the team in August, has been appointed to the role of senior vice president, global co-production, financing and business development, based in Gaumont’s London offices. The addition of Vermeulen is part of Gaumont’s continued commitment to create and foster strategic partnerships worldwide as they continue to bolster their animation and family slate across all genres.

They will be working closely with Terry Kalagian, senior vice president, creative development, animation and family, and her team to handle funding models/partners for the current development slate and serve to identify new co-pro projects and future opportunities. Courtney Arumugam, vice president, creative development, also based in London, will report to Vermeulen and continue to develop and produce out of the U.K.

"I am absolutely thrilled to join Nicolas at long last, and his amazingly talented team,” says Vermeulen. “I am very excited by the diverse development slate, and to be a part of putting together the jigsaw puzzle to drive more global co-productions.”

Cyril Le Pesant joined the company in May as the new head of animation and family, Gaumont Animation, Paris. Le Pesant will work together with the animation and family teams in the U.S. and U.K. across the sourcing of IP, co-productions, development and production with a primary focus on running the Paris based studio which will report to him directly.

“I am very happy and proud to join Gaumont, the company whose Marguerite (Daisy) logo rocked my childhood,” says Le Pesant. “I am also delighted to work with Nicolas Atlan and Terry Kalagian and their entire team who have done an extraordinary job over the last four years.  This is a very exciting time at Gaumont Animation and Family, and I feel so lucky to have been given this opportunity. With so many projects already in production in addition to a robust development slate, we are on an incredible path.”

Vermeulen most recently served as head of global content strategy and co-production in addition to managing director based in the U.K. office of Cloudco Entertainment. During her time at Cloudco, she oversaw the financing and distribution and served as executive producer.

Le Pesant most recently served as co-founder and chief executive officer of Knightworks, a production, animation and creative studio based in Paris.  Since Knightworks debuted in 2009, Le Pesant has partnered with a long list of high-profile clients and has produced more than a dozen animated and scripted series, films and documentaries.

“I can’t begin to express how thrilled we are to have both Karen and Cyril join the Gaumont team,” says Nicolas Atlan, president, animation and family, Gaumont Animation. “I’ve known Karen for many years and I’ve always wanted to work with her, and Cyril’s energy and passion makes him a perfect fit for our team. Together they bring a new level of creative expertise and technical skills which will further add to the momentum Gaumont continues to build across Europe and around the world. Both will work closely with Terry Kalagian, our SVP of Creative Development, and her talented team.”

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