Sharon Levy Upped to CEO of Endemol Shine North America, As It Shifts From Banijay Holding Company to Studio

Sharon Levy has been promoted to CEO of Banijay’s Endemol Shine North America. As Levy takes on her new role, Endemol Shine North America will shift from its dual role as a studio and Banijay Americas’ holding company to solely an independent production company, alongside the nine other Banijay studios in the territory.

The shift comes following news that Banijay Americas‘ Cris Abrego would step down as CEO, a position that will now we held by Ben Samek as Abrego (who continues as chairman) shifts focus to business development and acquisitions for the Banijay Group unit. Banijay Group acquired Endemol Shine in July 2020.

Levy previously served as chief content officer of Endemol Shine North America. In her new role, Levy will manage all aspects of the studio’s business, while also continuing to lead its unscripted and scripted programming from its North Hollywood headquarters.

“Sharon is one of the most strategic executives in the business, someone whose creative vision is matched only by her market savvy,” Samek said in a statement. “Over the past five years, she has already positioned Endemol Shine North America as a major industry player and unleashed the creativity of her group. I look forward to supporting her as she leads her talented team to new heights.”

As Endemol Shine North America repositions solely as a studio, it continues as part of the Banijay Americas roster of shingles including 51 Minds Entertainment, A Fábrica, Authentic Entertainment, Banijay Mexico & US Hispanic, Bunim Murray Productions, Endemol Shine Boomdog, Endemol Shine Brasil, Stephen David Entertainment and Truly Original.

“I’m very excited to take on the CEO role for the new Endemol Shine North America as we chart its course forward during an extraordinary time for the industry,” Levy said. “I am thankful to Ben for believing in me and my exceptional team and giving us the responsibility and opportunity to redefine ESNA. With Endemol Shine North America now operating solely as a production studio, we’ll move more nimbly and be better positioned to meet the challenges of the moment. It’s a new era at ESNA, and we look forward to working with partners, old and new, to create great television.”

See Samek’s note to staff announcing Levy’s promotion and the repositioning of Endemol Shine North Americas below.

Dear Colleagues,

Thank you for all your notes of congratulations and support in response to my appointment as CEO of Banijay Americas. Today, I am pleased to announce a key structural change to Banijay Americas that will impact how we will work in the future and share news of an exciting promotion for our extraordinary colleague, Sharon Levy.

Historically, Endemol Shine North America (ESNA) has had a dual function as the parent company to our subsidiaries and as a production label. Going forward, ESNA will be reconstituted as a production studio alongside the nine other studios that together form Banijay Americas. This key change in our structure will help us work more collaboratively and efficiently internally and represent ourselves more clearly to the outside community.

Leading the new studio will be Sharon Levy, who has been elevated to Chief Executive Officer of Endemol Shine North Americas. Sharon is one of the most strategic executives in the business, someone whose creative vision is matched only by her market savvy. Since joining the team in 2017, most recently in her role as Chief Content Officer, Sharon has positioned ESNA as a major industry player, launching hits like LEGO Masters and Wipeout, overseeing the MasterChef franchises, and more. I am so excited about this new leadership opportunity for Sharon and look forward to supporting my friend and colleague as she leads her talented team to new heights. Congratulations, Sharon!

A company is its people and its culture. With the recent acquisition of A Fábrica in Brazil, Banijay Americas today is now composed of 10 production labels, each with its own leadership and goals.

51 Minds Entertainment – Christian Sarabia
A Fábrica – Luiz Noronha
Authentic Entertainment – Christian Sarabia
Banijay Mexico & US Hispanic – Marie Leguizamo
Bunim Murray Productions – Julie Pizzi
Endemol Shine Boomdog – Alejandro Rincon
Endemol Shine Brasil – Nani Fritas
Endemol Shine North America – Sharon Levy
Stephen David Entertainment – Stephen David
Truly Original – Steven Weinstock and Glenda Hersh

Banijay Americas is united by entrepreneurial drive and boundless creativity. Our collaborative core enhances our competitive edge, so while each of our labels maintains creative independence, the executive team at Banijay Americas will continue to provide leadership and support across key business areas. Please see our new executive landing page at for the full team.

We all know that our industry is changing rapidly. In an environment like this, working at a company like ours has tremendous value. We are a content powerhouse. We embrace innovation and welcome change. We are big enough to make a splash and lean enough to remain nimble. So while there are surely challenges ahead for all of us, there is no team I would rather face those with. I look forward to working with the leaders of our incredible studios, and all of you, as we collectively grow Banijay Americas for the future.

Onward, Adelante, Adiante!


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