Mystery-shrouded Hulu Japan hires new managing director


It’s still mum on how its subscription base in Japan is developing, but Hulu did confirm that it has hired a new managing director to run its operations in the region, Buddy Marini.

Previously heading Avex Asia Limited, a Hong Kong-based subsidiary of Japanese entertainment conglomerate Avex Group, Marini (pictured) will report to Hulu senior VP of international Johannes Larcher.  He’ll lead all strategy and operations for Hulu’s business in Japan, which opened shop in September.

A Hulu representative would not respond to our queries as to how this would change Hulu Japan’s executive infrastructure other than to say he’s reporting to Larcher.

Marini, who oversaw Asian film investment for Avex, started his career in the U.S., working as an agent trainee for Hollywood talent agency William Morris Endeavor and later as a creative executive for Universal Pictures.

So what’s he walking into? Tough to say, since Hulu is reluctant to release usage data on the region.

Last month, the streaming video company announced that it had lowered its subscription price in Japan from ¥1480 (about $18.20) to ¥980 ($12.10).

While not offering an update on its Japanese operations, a Hulu rep said the company has increased its content partnerships to 21 from the six it had in the region at launch. Also, the estimated number of devices in Japan that are “Hulu-enabled” has reached 29 million.

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