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Michael Stanford returns to Ten ahead of sales division launch

Ten has appointed the first member of its soon-to-launch sales division, with Initiative’s chief creative solutions officer Michael Stanford to return to the network as national creative director.

Stanford was previously national creative director of Ten’s branded entertainment and content division, Generate, and will return to the network on September 17 to lead the new creative arm of the sales division, Ten Imagine.

Stanford is returning to the network to lead the creative division

It comes as Ten also announces a new digital unit, Ten Interactive, which will be underpinned by CBS Interactive’s technology platform, and a new automated trading platform, Ten Exchange.

Since May 2016, Stanford has worked at IPG Mediabrands, first as managing director of Ensemble before being appointed chief creative solutions officer of Initiative early last year. He has also held senior creative roles at Y&R and McCann.

His appointment comes two weeks after Ten announced it would no longer be working with MCN and would look to create its own in-house sales team.

At the time, Ten’s chief executive officer, Paul Anderson, said: “This is about really taking our destiny in our own hands. The world’s changed a lot in the last three years since we entered the relationship with MCN. The ad world has changed, the audience has changed and we’ve had a change of ownership.”

MCN will continue to receive bookings for Ten until the end of 2018.

In his new role, Stanford will lead the creative and category specialist divisions of Ten’s sales team, and will also oversee the network’s commercial production development.

Ten’s newly appointed chief sales officer, Rod Prosser, described Stanford as “one of the best and most versatile” directors in Australia.

“I’m delighted to welcome Michael back to Ten and to this important and exciting new role. As we build our advertising sales team, including a strong emphasis on delivering great results for our clients, Michael and Ten Imagine will be pivotal in executing our customers’ strategies,” Prosser said.

Stanford said he couldn’t wait to be part of the “new era”.

“Television is unmatched, not just in reaching audiences at scale but also in how brands can connect with consumers through creativity, relevance and innovation,” he added.

Of the new divisions, Prosser said the network was now in an excellent position to “maximise revenue and commercial opportunities”.

“We have defined our digital and trading solutions with Ten Interactive and Ten Exchange, and will continue to build the strength of our commercial, strategy and integration team,” Prosser said.

Stanford commences his new role on September 17.

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