Management changes are coming at NBCUniversal as it works to coordinate its linear and non-linear businesses, according to Jeff Shell, who became CEO of Comcast’s NBCU earlier this year.
Speaking on Comcast’s second-quarter earnings call Thursday, Shell noted that NBCU combined its television and streaming businesses under Mark Lazarus, who was named chairman, NBCU Television and Streaming in May.
“Mark is finalizing a new structure that will demonstrate the unique way we intend to manage this business going forward,” Shell said. “We will announce the structure soon.”
Shell noted that NBCU could not be more pleased with the launch of its new streaming service Peacock, which launched to Comcast subscribers in April and became available nationwide two weeks ago and has already registered 10 million signups.
“Not only are more people signing up than we projected, but they are watching more frequently and engaging much longer than we projected," he said. He noted that there was more movie watching than expected.
He noted that more programming would be coming to Peacock in January, including exclusive rights to The Office.
Next year, Peacock will be able to take advantage of NBCU’s coverage of the Tokyo summer Olympics, which were postponed, as well as the winter Olympics from Beijing a few months later.
“We feel very encouraged,” he said.
Shell noted that the company believes it can get its production of scripted programming going again later this summer.
“When combined with sports that are returning, we will have a full schedule of fresh and compelling programming on our various platforms in the fall,” he said. "At the same time, he said upfront conversation are in full swing and the ad market "is coming back more rapidly than we anticipated."
Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.
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