The last bow is placed on top WarnerMedia and Discovery’s $40 billion mergerwhich constitutes one of the largest players of pure content in the field of media.
Discovery CEO David Zaslav He has been appointed as the new leader of Warner Bros Discovery since the time the deal was first proposed last May. Questions lingered for months about which leadership team he would make. Earlier this week, he ended up favoring Discovery’s brass across the board (something Deadline report may sign A month ago).
JB Perrette, who was Discovery’s Head of Live and International Broadcasting, has been appointed CEO and Head of Global Broadcasting and Interactive Entertainment. Gunnar Wiedenfels, former chief financial officer of Discovery and one of the architects for the merger, will hold the same title in the new company but with a slight expansion in the lawn. Other major promotions went to longtime CEO Bruce Campbell, who became director of revenue and strategy; and Kathleen Finch, former President of Lifestyle Brands who now oversees All Line Networks.
Other notable appointments at the new company included four other Discovery vets: Adria Albert Rom, chief of the people and responsible for culture; David Levy, Chief Corporate Affairs Officer; Laurie Locke, chief accounting officer; and Attorney General Saval Sims.
HBO president Casey Bloys and Warner Bros film and television chiefs Toby Emmerich and Channing Dongye were confirmed to continue with the new structure, as was international president Gerhard Ziller. However, confirmation of the executives’ initial flight did not remove all the uncertainty. A large vacancy exists, for example, atop Turner Sports, a role that opened up when Jeff Zucker left last February. (His replacement for CNN, Chris Licht, has no sports oversight.) Personnel reforms are being studied in many other parts of the empire as the merger process begins.
Standardization will determine the larger organizational chart, in another round of simplification for Warner Media Employees who have endured several of them over the past few years. The $3 billion in cost savings that Discovery has promised to Wall Street will mean massive job cuts. The details of those cuts – who stays and who goes – will be the next closely watched set of the entertainment world’s most important deal in years.
One thing is clear: The high-profile system put in place by former WarnerMedia CEO Jason Kilar is pretty much gone, starting with Kilar himself. Nine of the 11 direct reports have come out of the company, including chief studio and networking Ann Sarnoff and broadcast supervisor Andy Forsell. Other departures include the departure of CFO Jennifer Berry; Chief Human Resources Jim Cummings; Executive Vice President of Communications and Head of Inclusion Kristi Hoebiger; Executive Vice President and Chief Revenue Officer Tony Goncalves; General Counsel Jim Meza; and Chief Technology Officer Richard Tom.
Shortly before the closing of the deal was announced, john Steinlauf He was appointed head of US advertising sales for the new company. There was no immediate word on the condition of JP Colaco, head of advertising sales for WarnerMedia. Like Andy Forsell and Richard Tom, Colako worked for years at Hulu, which Kelar managed as CEO. He also had a senior executive position at Vessell, the YouTube competitor that Kilar founded and later sold to Verizon.