Matchbox’s Kylie Washington is heading to BBC Studios

Kylie Washington.

BBC Studios has appointed Kylie Washington, Matchbox Pictures director of unscripted, as the head of its new production hub in Australia.

As director of production Washington will work closely with Jon Penn, MD of BBC Studios Australia and New Zealand, and his executive team to exploit the BBC’s formats, create new programming and build partnerships with UK and Australian broadcasters and digital platforms.

The unit has already secured its first commission, multi-platform event Stargazing Live 2, which will screen on the ABC and on iview from May 22 to 24.

The UK broadcaster’s global production arm, BBC Studios launched in April following the merger with commercial division BBC Worldwide.

Washington, who joined Matchbox in 2012, has worked across an array of programming including the Real Housewives franchise for Foxtel, Australian Spartan for the Seven Network and Room 101 for SBS. She also developed original formats including Formal Wars for Seven and Everyone’s A Critic for the ABC.

Penn described Washington as “a talented creative who combines a strong track record in television production with insight into the entertainment experiences that our customers and their audiences are looking for.”

Washington said: “It’s an exciting time of change in the Australian media and I look forward to joining a company that I have admired for many years. The BBC has such a wonderful, rich history of content and I look forward to continuing that legacy within the Australian market.”

She is the second high-profile departure from Matchbox after MD Christopher Oliver-Taylor quit in March to move to FremantleMedia Australia as CEO.

Matchbox acting MD Matt Vitins tells IF: “We are very proud of the work Kylie Washington has created in the last six years at Matchbox. She has been pivotal in bringing the Real Housewives to reality in Melbourne, Sydney and Auckland, as well as a number of other shows.”

Matchbox has started the search for her replacement.