HBO chief Richard Plepler leaves the network he spent decades building in post-AT & T shakeup
Plepler did not give a special reason for departure, but said in an email to the entire staff that "it is the right time for me to do so."
The news comes just days after a complaint court ruled the AT&T acquisition of HBO's parent company, WarnerMedia, formerly known as Time Warner. (CNN is also a unit of WarnerMedia.)
"It has been a great pleasure for my professional life to share this trip with you over these many years. And the great honor of my professional life being your CEO, "Plepler wrote in his note to employees. "I don't have the words to express my gratitude for the support and talent that made our successes possible. But it is enough to say that my love for this place and for all of you is deeply part of me and will last the lifetime. "
Plepler said in his note that he had informed John Stankey, General Manager of WarnerMedia, that he would" work closely with him to ensure a seamless and organic transition. "HBO's Future under AT & T ( T ) ownership has been a subject of speculation since the AT&T Time Warner merger was closed last summer. HBO is an important part of the telecom company's strategy to take on other entertainment needs, including Netflix ( NFLX ) and Disneys ( ) upcoming streaming service
Achieving dominance will require AT&T and HBO to find a delicate balance Known for its high-quality programming, HBO cuts out significantly less content than Netflix
Nevertheless, Netflix has won over critics and set itself up as a formidable HBO competitor, Streaming Service achieved 112 Emmy nominations last year and quit premium -tv-king's long government in this area t for most winnings.
AT & T leaders have expressed a desire to ramp up production on HBO. The New York Times reported in July at a meeting held by Plepler and Stankey with HBO staff, where the newspaper said Stankey was discussing the time viewers used to watch HBO programs.
"We need hours a day," Stankey said, according to Times. "It's not hours a week, and it's not hours of the month. We need hours a day. You compete with devices sitting in people's hands that catch your attention every 15 minutes."
A few months later, AT & T CEO Randall Stephenson was repeated the company's plans to get HBO to increase production. While speaking at a media conference in New York, he also promised not to mess with the network image.
Stephenson said he was not talking about "Netflix-like investments" and also referred to the competitor as "Walmart" of streaming streaming video. In contrast, he heard HBO "Tiffany."
Warner Media announced later plans for its own streaming TV service that will be sold directly to consumers. Stankey said the service would "start with HBO and re-programming as the viewers require." There will be three versions of the streaming platform. It is expected to start this year, even if the company has not said exactly when.