Turner Network Television chief Steve Koonin is adding Turner Broadcasting System Inc. sibling TBS
Superstation to his watch.
Koonin will now head up both channels as executive vice president and chief operating officer.
The move comes after new TBS Inc. chairman Phil Kent reorganized the
company's structure, promoting former ad-sales chief Mark Lazarus to president
of Turner Entertainment Group, which includes TNT and TBS, along with Turner
South and Turner Classic Movies.
Lazarus said TNT and TBS will remain distinctly different channels, but
he contended that both will benefit under the direction of a single leader.
"Given [Koonin's] abilities to market and position a product or a network, he
was uniquely suited," Lazarus said.
Koonin, who has headed TNT since 2000, crafted its "We Know Drama"
positioning and its amassing of acquired series, like Law & Order, as well as
sports and big-name theatrical movies.
TBS has been more focused on comedy, particularly its fringe block of popular
acquired comedies like Seinfeld and Friends.
Koonin said he aims to fine-tune TBS' branding and to build off the comedy
"Any brand with tenure needs to be redefined for every generation," he added.
Like with TNT's repositioning, "We'll find out the need [for viewers] and
create TBS' positioning," he said.
Former TBS executive VP and general manager Dennis Quinn is moving over to a newly created
operations and strategy unit, where he will be executive VP.