DAZN GROUP NAMES FRANCO BERNABÈ AS SENIOR STRATEGIC ADVISOR AND APPOINTS STEFANO AZZI AS CEO FOR ITALY IN LINE WITH AMBITIOUS GLOBAL GROWTH STRATEGY
LONDON/MILAN, 10th February 2022 – DAZN Group, the leading global sports entertainment company, today announces that preeminent businessperson and veteran telecoms executive Franco Bernabè has joined as a senior strategic advisor to its Italian operations. This appointment underscores DAZN’s long term commitment to the Italian market.
Bernabè is one of the country’s most distinguished executives with unrivalled experience in the telecommunications sector; most notably he was CEO and Chairman of TIM, Italy’s leading telecoms group and DAZN’s distribution partner.
Known as a principled and visionary leader, Bernabè emerged as one of Italy’s most formidable executives in the 1990s when he overhauled energy company Eni and built it into the respected multinational it is today. He subsequently turned around the fortunes of TIM, establishing his reputation as a transformational CEO. Since then, he has held high-profile positions in the ICT sector and is a sought-after strategic advisor and board member.
A trained economist and expert in regulatory affairs, Bernabè’s skills will be invaluable as DAZN works with the authorities and other stakeholders to define new standards for over-the-top (OTT) streaming services in Italy, which will establish the benchmark for the rest of the world as live broadcasting further migrates online.
Franco Bernabè said, “DAZN has an inspiring vision and a workforce of dedicated professionals who want to do good by their customers. As a committed sports fan myself, it was with huge pleasure that I accepted this role. I am certain that my experience will support DAZN’s ambition to deliver a great experience for Italian sports fans.”
Also announced today is the appointment of Stefano Azzi as a local CEO for DAZN’s Italian operations. Veronica Diquattro, who was previously responsible for DAZN’s day-to-day operations in Italy, was appointed Chief Revenue Officer for Europe in October 2021, a role in which she oversees the commercial operations of DAZN in Italy, Spain and DACH.
Digital transformation and consumer market expert Azzi will take up the newly-created role on 1 March 2022. Azzi is an experienced executive with a wealth of commercial and managerial experience across telecoms, digital entertainment and consumer goods/services.
He spent nearly a decade at TIM and has a proven track record at both an operational and strategic level. Having spent his final three years as TIM’s Chief Consumer Officer, Azzi has a deep understanding of the domestic consumer market, which will be invaluable as DAZN Italy continues to drive growth and market penetration.
Stefano Azzi said, “The chance to join such a driven team of professionals is an honour. I look forward to delivering for Italian fans and DAZN employees, and I look forward to working with Veronica.”
Shay Segev said, “It is a true honour to have Franco join as an advisor. He is an extremely impressive and hugely respected professional whose guidance and expertise will be greatly welcomed as we continue to work tirelessly to further improve the quality of our service and deliver for fans.”
Talking of Stefano’s appointment, Shay Segev said, “Creating this role reflects our commitment to and the importance of our business in Italy. To have recruited someone of Stefano’s calibre is fantastic as we expand our offering into new and exciting areas of digital entertainment. Stefano has the perfect blend of domestic and international experience and I have no doubt that he will provide the right leadership.”
DAZN launched in Italy in 2018 and in 2021 DAZN licensed the rights for all 10 Serie A games, enabling Italian fans to watch on any interactive device, smart TVs and mobiles. DAZN has since invested in better streaming quality and continues to make significant investments to improve customer experience.