Gavin Deans has been appointed as the new commercial director at RTÉ. Deans, 45, was managing director of Media Central, the sales house owned by Bauer Media. He replaces Geraldine O’Leary who resigned from the role in the summer, shortly before she was due to retire. He will take on the new position in February. Deans started his career in advertising with Trinity Mirror, which now trades as Reach.
He also worked as sales manager at Metro Ireland. He joined Rupert Murdoch’s News International in 2007 as sales manager for the Sunday Times. In 2012, he moved to Denis O’Brien’s Communicorp as sales manager for 98FM and Spin 1038. In 2014, he helped launch Media Central, which managed commercial sales for the group. In September, Bauer Media bought Media Central, having already acquired Communicorp in June 2021.
“RTÉ holds a special place in Ireland’s media landscape. I’m genuinely inspired by its commitment to delivering high-quality content and serving the needs of the public,” Deans said in a statement. “At the same time, I understand the challenges that RTÉ faces. My focus, and that of my new colleagues, will be to deliver the maximum amount of revenue possible to safeguard RTÉ’s public service portfolio for future generations.”
Deans’ appointment was marked by RTÉ director general Kevin Bakhurst. He said: “Commercial revenue will be an essential pillar of a sustainable RTÉ and, with his unparalleled experience as an innovator in the sector. I’m confident that our excellent commercial team will have a leader that can drive results for RTÉ and for our audiences.”