Less than 90 days into the job, WarnerMedia’s new CEO Jason Kilar today via an internal email announced major changes at top executive levels that places a higher emphasis on the companies streaming service.
In an email sent to WarnerMedia employees obtained by CNBC, Kilar announces that its current streaming executive Andy Forssell will now lead a new “new HBO Max operating business unit.”
Andy Forssell, General Manager of HBO Max, will now be leading a newly created HBO Max operating business unit and report to me. Andy and his team will be responsible for the product, marketing, consumer engagement, and global rollout of HBO Max.CEO Kilar email to employees
Kilar also announces the “Studios and Networks Group” which will lead by Ann Sarnoff, the chair and CEO of WarnerMedia’s which will combine the company’s numerous content platforms into one.
Ann Sarnoff, Warner Bros. Chair and CEO, will be leading our newly created Studios and Networks Group, combining original production (content studios) and programming capabilities currently spread across Warner Bros., HBO, HBO Max, TNT, TBS and TruTV. This group will oversee all WarnerMedia television series and motion picture development, production and programming, partnering with Andy to ensure HBO Max is successful globally.CEO Kilar email to employees
Additional changes include that chief Revenue Officer Gerhard Zeiler will now lead “now lead WarnerMedia’s newly integrated international operations for Warner Bros., HBO and Turner Networks.” The new division will be responsible for combined US ad sales and content distributions with 3rd parties.
Kilar’s email to staff notes that he intents to expand HBO Max’s “scope globally.” HBO recently reported a total of 36.3 million users, ranking on the top of streaming services such as Netflix and Disney+. The market for streaming content is fierce, with Apple TV+ taking an aggressive push to obtain more original content, while Disney+ relies on archived and newer content.
What approach Kilar will take HBO Max is still unknown, but if the changes indicate anything it’s that WarnerMedia is eager to expand beyond the United States and grow its subscriber base in other regions, which will ultimately require to produce more international content.