Amit Malhotra to head HBO Max in SE-Asia and India

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WarnerMedia has appointed Amit Malhotra as managing director for its direct-to-consumer platform HBO Max in Southeast Asia and India.

He will report to Johannes Larcher, head of HBO Max International, and will be responsible for the rollout and management of the streaming service in Southeast Asia. The new role involves assuming responsibility for the management of HBO GO, WarnerMedia’s existing OTT streaming service available in eight territories across the region.

In future, he will spearhead the introduction of HBO Max in these territories, as well as lead WarnerMedia’s exploration of opportunities to launch the streaming platform in additional markets, including India. 

HBO previously licensed most of its programming, including hit series Games Of Thrones, to the Hotstar streaming platform in India, when it was owned by Star India. Currently India’s biggest streamer in terms of MAUs, Hotstar is now owned by Disney and has been rebranded Disney Plus Hotstar. 

Malhotra most recently served as regional lead for Disney Plus in Southeast Asia, where he was responsible for overseeing the launch and operations of Disney’s streaming services, including Disney Plus and Disney Plus Hotstar, in the region.

He also headed the content sales and distribution division of Disney’s Direct-to Consumer & International (DTCI) business in South APAC and Middle East, pivoting Disney’s linear business in the region to streaming.

Larcher said: “With our upcoming launch across Latin America on June 29 and our plans for Europe on the horizon, we turn our sights toward Asia, where we have an incredible opportunity to bring HBO Max to millions of new fans who are just as excited about streaming as our audiences in the US.”

David Simonsen, who worked on the rollout of HBO GO in Southeast Asia, will continue to work closely with Malhotra as part of his executive leadership team.

HBO Max has added 11.2 million subscribers since launching in the US in May last year. The platform will roll out in 39 territories across Latin America and the Caribbean on June 29, while HBO’s existing OTT services in Europe are scheduled to be upgraded to HBO Max later this year.