Eddie Cunningham is President of Universal Pictures International Entertainment (UPIE), and reports to Rick Finkelstein (Vice Chairman, COO, Universal Pictures). UPIE distributes home entertainment content through its own operations in 21 countries around the world and licences product to an additional 50 countries internationally.
Based in London, Cunningham is responsible for spearheading international business growth opportunities for UPIE. He leads Universal Pictures’ International Home Entertainment business and oversees distribution in territories including Europe, Asia and Latin America. He serves on the Board of Directors for Universal’s joint ventures with Studio Canal in France, Sony Pictures Home Entertainment in Australia, oversees UPIE’s Home Entertainment Productions and Acquisitions and serves on the Universal Pictures’ Greenlight Committee.
Cunningham joined the company in 1994 as Managing Director of the Polygram home entertainment business (before its acquisition by Universal Pictures), which he built into a U.K. leader with market shares in the mid-teens. After a spell as Chairman of UK Operations and Regional Managing Director for the Nordic countries, Australia and New Zealand, he was promoted to President of International in November of 2006.
UPIE continues to pursue opportunities for international growth, including the acquisition of a majority stake in the Japanese company Geneon in 2009, where the company is now the market leader amongst the Hollywood studios in this territory. UPIE also has agreements to distribute home entertainment product for Studio Canal and Wildside in France, Sandrew Metronome in the Nordics, Paramount in Benelux, Italy and New Zealand, Fox in New Zealand and has a long-standing relationship with Sony in the UK (UCA).
Prior to joining Universal Pictures, Cunningham held a number of roles in retail and distribution. He was an operating board member of the Woolworths retail business and Commercial Director of Entertainment UK, the biggest entertainment software distributor in the world.