Rainbow Promotes Three
New management focuses on increasing content, branding
By Anne Becker -- Broadcasting & Cable, 12/12/2004 7:00:00 PM
Rainbow Media has filled three executive slots at AMC, IFC and WE: Women's Entertainment, rounding out posts left vacant after a corporate accounting scandal at the Cablevision-owned company June 2003. The new hires all come from within the ranks of Rainbow Media Holdings LLC.
The staffing will allow Rainbow to focus on original programming, brand development and new technology for its television networks, says Rainbow President and CEO Josh Sapan. “It's exciting what we're embarking upon,” he adds. “It's a new day for all three networks.”
For Rainbow, this second round of staffing up (the first came in September) is a respite after the problems that rocked the company last June and led to the firings of 14 executives and staff members. The $18 million scandal centered on an effort to hit budget targets set by Rainbow through cooking the books and understating AMC group earnings.
Management changes are as follows:
Ed Carroll will step up to head entertainment services for the company's three networks. Previously, EVP and general manager of IFC, Carroll's focus includes increasing the 10-year-old network's original content and driving its value on digital tiers for the cable affiliates. He'll do the same for AMC, which recently surged in the ratings after introducing more modern classic movies and original fare. In November, the network was up 17% in viewership from the same month last year.
Kim Martin, most recently EVP of distribution and affiliate marketing for AMC, Fuse, IFC, WE, Mag Rack and sportskool, was upped to EVP and GM of WE. Martin says she has a strong upcoming original programming slate, with 50 projects in development, including a “Desperate Housewives-type docudrama.” Returning series include Bridezilla, Full Frontal Fashion and She House. Martin hopes to bring in more advertisers in 2005 and distinguish WE from its competitors by branding it for a younger, hipper, more educated audience.
Gregg Hill is the former EVP of affiliate sales and marketing for AMC, IFC, WE and Mag Rack. He'll take the reins as president of distribution and Rainbow network sales. In the role, he aims to strengthen Rainbow's affiliate base and partner with these affiliates to develop VOD and broadband technologies. IFC, for example, has been testing VOD channel IFC Uncensored On Demand with Cablevision and will roll out the channels to other cable operators.
According to Sapan, the decision to promote from within was deliberate. “They'll make things happen with creativity and vigor.”
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