NBC Entertainment Chairman Robert Greenblatt has been hired to run HBO, the Turner cable networks TNT, TBS and truTV and other properties that were previously run separately, with Greenblatt named chairman of WarnerMedia’s entertainment and direct-to-consumer divisions as part of WarnerMedia’s reorganization.
The move had been rumored to be imminent, especially after longtime HBO Chief Executive Richard Plepler announced last week that he was leaving the company. The move also follows last week’s approval by a federal appeals court of AT&T’s $81 billion acquisition of Time Warner.
The AP notes that the merger, one of the largest ever in the media industry, had been strongly opposed by the Trump administration since the deal was finalized in June 2018.
As part of the reorganization at WarnerMedia, CNN boss Jeff Zucker will become chairman of WarnerMedia News & Sports, retaining his role at CNN while adding sports to his responsibilities.
WarnerMedia said in a statement that the moves will “provide the company with the agility and flexibility needed to build WarnerMedia’s brands across a variety of evolving distribution models with a more coordinated approach to the company’s original programming.”
The AP notes: “Telecom companies have been acquiring producers of entertainment, news and other content to compete with tech giants such as Google, Amazon and Netflix. WarnerMedia plans to launch an upcoming streaming service later this year, a three-tiered offering with a slate of new and library content centered around the existing HBO streaming app.”