In October 2013, Ben launched Chalkboard TV as one of three co-founders. Chalkboard aims to become one of the UK’s leading producers of entertainment, factual entertainment and reality formats.
Prior to forming Chalkboard, Ben was one of the Managing Directors of Shine Group. He was MD of The Hatch, Shine’s innovative social enterprise production company that set out to give young people from more diverse backgrounds a unique opportunity in this intensely competitive industry. Before forming The Hatch Ben was Managing Director of Shine Groups’ format business, Shine Network, helping manage development, acquisitions and content strategy across the Shine group of companies. Before joining Shine, Ben was Chief Creative Officer, Entertainment at Digital Rights Group (DRG), the UK’s leading independent TV distributor.
Ben was previously Creative Director for Format Development at BBC Worldwide, overseeing the creation of new formats for BBC Worldwide’s growing global network of international production offices. His team secured new network commissions for the business in the UK, USA and Australia.
Ben made his name in the format business as Creative Director and Managing Partner of The Chatterbox Partnership, one of the UK’s first and most successful TV format creation businesses. With co-founder, Tom Ellemann, Chatterbox developed more than 30 formats from initial idea through first commission and onto international success generating more than 1300 hours of original production (and counting!) along the way.
Before founding Chatterbox in 1996, Ben was a TV journalist and presenter working on consumer affairs and travel programmes on BBC1 and BBC2.