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FUNimation announces new director of sales

posted on 2003-07-21 14:06 EDT
Snags Pioneer Entertainment Sr. National Sales Manager

FUNimation has announced the appointment of Tony Vandeveerdonk as the Director of Sales for FUNimation's Home Video Division. Vandeveerdonk, formerly the Sr. National Sales Manager for Pioneer Entertainment, is considered one of the pioneer's in the placement and sales of anime videos, particularly in breaking into mainstream retailers like Best Buy (with Akira) and Wallmart (with Pokémon).

Interestingly, or perhaps "karmic" as FUNimation representative Jeff Dronen put it, Vandeveerdonk was involved in the sale of the first 3 DBZ movies for Pioneer. Rights to these movies will be reverting to FUNimation at the end of this August and Vandeveerdonk will undoubtedly be involved once again in placing these titles on store shelves.

Excerpts from Press Release:

"We are proud to announce Tony's arrival at FUNimation. Tony is one of the few pioneers in the placement and sales of some of the first and most successful anime videos in the industry," states Gen Fukunaga, president of FUNimation Productions, LTD. "During the Pokémon anime phenomenon, he was responsible for the sales of Pokémon to the mass merchant channel and many other key accounts."

Vandeveerdonk brings 14 years of home video experience to FUNimation. "It has been a great ride being part of the initial growth of the anime market," commented Vandeveerdonk. "I have seen the category grow from a small niche business in the $40-50 million range, to almost a half billion dollar industry in a short five years. I expect this brisk growth to continue."

Regarding his new position as the Director of FUNimation's Home Video Sales Division, Vandeveerdonk was positive about both the opportunity and the challenge. "FUNimation has a strong position and share of the anime and kidvid categories already. We will further expand and dominate these categories with a portfolio of exciting new titles."

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