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Lighthouse Studios, the new Irish production house launched in 2017 as a joint venture between Ottawa, Canada’s Mercury Filmworks and Kilkenny, Ireland-based Cartoon Saloon, has announced the hire of content and advertising creative executive Claire Finn as the studio’s new managing director.

Finn, who most recently served as head of content/executive producer for branded entertainment at London-based Firecracker Films, will be responsible for growing Lighthouse’s development commitments and expanding production projects, focusing on children’s and family animated content. She will also work toward increasing the studios’ global production services clients.

The 2d studio in Kilkenny, which has said it intends to employ 140 production personnel, offers end-to-end production services, from script and storyboard through design, animation, and post. It’s currently wrapping production on the Amazon Original preschool series Bug Diaries and starting preliminary animation on the second season of Give A Mouse A Cookie, also for Amazon.

“Claire brings a wealth of experience in content development, production, design, and the management of artists, all of which will benefit Lighthouse Studios in growing its pipeline,” said Mercury Filmworks CEO Clint Eland. “She is a talented creative executive and producer who has demonstrated a keen acumen for strategic planning across all media platforms.”

Added Cartoon Saloon’s CEO Paul Young, “After taking a considerable amount of time to find the right person to lead Lighthouse, we are delighted to be able to introduce Claire to our friends and partners in the animation industry. Lighthouse now can continue with confidence to create a truly creative studio and contribute to making Kilkenny a center of excellence in animation production, drawing talent from all over the world.”

Most of Finn’s prior experience is in content development and advertising. At Firecracker Films, she worked with brands such as Nike, Vodafone, and Johnny Walker, among others. She served as EP on several documentary style projects, including the Nike basketball TV series, “Nike: Rise Philippines,” Vodafone’s “People Doing Amazing Things for the First Time,” and an award-winning project for Pride Festival 2017.

Prior to that role, she served as head of content production for Channel 4’s in-house agency 4Creative, and as an executive producer at ad agency R/GA London, where she worked on the campaign “Meet the Pills” by Beats by Dre.

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