Content VP Terry Denson Leaves Verizon

Verizon Communications vice president, content strategy and acquisition Terry Denson has left the telco, the company confirmed Thursday. No replacement has been named.

Verizon confirmed that Denson left the company about a month ago. His team is currently taking over his responsibilities and no replacement has been named yet. Because it involves an individual employee matter, Verizon declined further comment.

Denson joined Verizon in 2004 as VP of video programming and content marketing and was tasked with filling its start-up Fios TV service with content. He was promoted to his latest position in 2008.   The former Insight Communications executive – he had been VP of programming there for several years – hasn’t been afraid to rattle some cages. In 2013, Denson was one of the first content acquisition execs to say that carriage deals should be tied to ratings.

During Denson’s watch, Verizon was a leader in offering innovative sports packages and was one of the first distributors to implement a regional sports network surcharge in 2013 ($2.42 per month); now practically every distributor has one.

Most recently, Verizon launched its controversial skinny bundle – Custom TV – in 2015 on Denson’s watch. The controversial package raised the ire of some programmers – ESPN sued over it shortly after it was announced. The two companies reached a settlement in May.

Denson has a long history in the TV business. A Harvard grad with a J.D. from Georgetown University, he served stints at MTV Networks and ABC before joining Insight. His wife, Denise Denson, is EVP, content distribution and marketing at Viacom.