Universal’s Latin American head Mauricio Duran will depart the company on August 5 and Ernesto Espinosa has been promoted to lead the region.
Duran served for 15 years at the company and played an integral role in growing the business in Latin America. He established the operating company in Mexico and the former operating company in Brazil, and led the region of offices and licensees under UIP (Universal and Paramount’s joint venture) and Universal Pictures International.
He helped Despicable Me, Fast & Furious, and Jurassic World become franchise hits in the region, where Despicable Me is the biggest animated franchise of all time.
Espinosa, who has served for 14 years at the company managing distribution in Mexico and the partnership with Warner Bros, rises to the newly created role of MD Mexico and SVP Latin America. His promotion is effective in August and the Mexico-based executive reports to UPI EVP and MD Niels Swinkels.
Under Espinosa’s leadership, the Fast & Furious, Despicable Me and Jurassic World franchises have each grossed more than $100m in Mexico.
“As we best position UPI for the future, our goals have always been focused on structuring our teams to promote collaboration, alignment, and operational excellence,” said Swinkels. “With Ernesto in this new role, I am confident that we have a strong leader who will be able to shepherd our teams in this important region to high performance, while also providing support for their territory needs.”
Swinkel’s memo to staff appears below:
As we continue to align our teams around the world with the new leadership structure for UPI, while also adapting to the rapidly evolving changes in our distribution landscape, I wanted to share an update on our leadership in the Latin American region.
Mauricio Duran, who has been our dear friend and colleague for the past 15 years will be departing Universal on August 5. Mauricio has been instrumental in growing the business in the LATAM region, establishing both the Mexico and our former Brazil OpCo, while also being an influential and beloved leader to the full region further comprising of UIP offices and licensees. Mauricio led the region in creating 3 of the biggest franchises of all time in Despicable Me, Fast & Furious, and Jurassic World, and most impressively making Despicable Me the biggest animated franchise of all time in Latin America.
On behalf of the entire UPI organization, I want to thank Mauricio for his tremendous contributions to our studio over the past decade and wish him all the best in his next endeavour.
With Mauricio’s departure, I am delighted to announce that Ernesto Espinosa will serve in a newly created role as MD Mexico and SVP LATAM from this August, reporting to me.
Over the past 14 years, Ernesto has brilliantly managed the distribution of our Universal slate in Mexico, whilst also successfully managing our partnership with Warner Bros. Under Ernesto’s leadership, Universal Mexico has had notable box office success with 3 of the top 10 franchises of all-time with Fast & Furious, Despicable Me and Jurassic World all grossing over $100M in Mexico.
As we best position UPI for the future, our goals have always been focused on structuring our teams to promote collaboration, alignment, and operational excellence. With Ernesto in this new role, I am confident that we have a strong leader who will be able to shepherd our teams in this important region to high performance, while also providing support for their territory needs.
Please join me in wishing Mauricio all the best in his next chapter and congratulating Ernesto on his new position
Very best wishes,