ABC News President David Westin, who has held the job since 1997, said he’ll be leaving the network at the end of the year, marking an end to a tenure that’s overseen dramatic changes in broadcast news, reports the Los Angeles Times’ Company Town blog.
No successor has been named, the story says. Westin is leaving when broadcast newscasts are losing viewers to cable, causing ratings declines, the article points out.
ABC News earlier this year cut more than 20% of its staff because the weak advertising market and ABC’s lack of a cable-news network on which to spread the costs of running a news organization, the article adds. "I’ve always admired those few who know when it is time to move on," Westin wrote in a memo to his staff. "We went through a very difficult transformation made necessary by changes in our business and its economics."
His departure may spark speculation that ABC News will seek a partner, the story points out. "Over the years, ABC has flirted with Time Warner’s CNN about possibly creating a partnership, but those talks have never led to a deal. More recently, ABC has been linked to Bloomberg LP, the business news conglomerate that is looking to expand its reach," the article adds.