Ken Sasaki directs and oversees the financial and operational concerns for all of VIZ Media, including home entertainment, publishing, licensing, and broadcast entertainment businesses. Sasaki first joined the company in February 2008 as Vice President of Strategy and Business Development, having previously been a management consultant in a variety of industries ranging from high tech to media to biopharmaceuticals. Sasaki paved the way for VIZ Media’s digital content distribution strategy and is forging relationships with key partners to diversify VIZ’s award-winning catalog with licensed properties outside the manga and anime sphere, as well as developing its own original content.
Sasaki spent his childhood in Japan and was educated both there and in the United States. He holds an MBA from Stanford Graduate School of Business and a bachelor’s degree in engineering from Keio University. Sasaki has worked extensively in both Japan and the United States. His understanding of Japanese and American business cultures and practices has enabled him to build bridges to ensure that VIZ Media continues to be at the industry forefront, nurturing the next generation of fans worldwide.
Brad Woods leads the marketing, licensing, public relations, and business development efforts for VIZ Media. A seasoned marketing and entertainment executive, Woods joined the company with a focus on revenue growth through transformative marketing efforts, new product development, and innovative brand expansion.
Woods came to VIZ Media from DreamWorks Animation, where he served as Senior Vice President leading the domestic consumer products and retail business development divisions. In this role, he led breakthrough marketing programs for properties including Madagascar, Kung Fu Panda, and How To Train Your Dragon. Over his twenty-year career, Woods has held senior positions in the consumer products and entertainment industries with companies including Mattel and Warner Bros. Entertainment. He holds an MBA from USC’s Marshall School of Business and a BS from the University of Arizona.
Leyla Aker leads the publishing division at VIZ Media, directing the editorial, production, design, and sales efforts behind the release of hundreds of print and digital volumes annually, including graphic novels, fiction, art books, illustrated books, and specialty products. Her extensive experience has helped her shape acquisition, licensing, and publishing strategies to keep VIZ Media at the forefront of the North American market while simultaneously expanding the company’s presence overseas.
Aker began her career by working as a bookseller and bookstore manager. She then transitioned to the publishing side and held editorial positions at Alfred A. Knopf and Random House Inc. before moving to VIZ Media in 2007. She graduated from Columbia University with a BA in English Literature.
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