AT&T Taps TBS's Kevin Reilly to Run Its New Netflix Competitor
(Bloomberg) -- AT&T Inc.’s WarnerMedia enlisted the president of its TBS and TNT networks to oversee the company’s Netflix-like streaming service, which is due late next year.
Kevin Reilly is tasked with forming the “creative identity” of the new online platform, WarnerMedia Chief Executive Officer John Stankey said in a memo to staff on Friday. Reilly will report to Stankey and David Levy, head of the company’s Turner division.
“Since joining Turner in 2015, Kevin has revitalized TBS and TNT with branding and content strategies that have helped them maintain their leading position with viewers week upon week,” Stankey said in the memo. “He has a reputation as a forward thinker when it comes to programming formats and cross-platform opportunities. And I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that ‘The Alienist,’ which he brought to TNT, is up for two Golden Globes this year.
The move follows AT&T’s announcement last month that it would sell its streaming service in three tiers: a movies-only plan, one with original programming and films, and a bundled version that offers content licensed from other companies. AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson has said that HBO will be central to the new offering.
AT&T is pushing into a crowded streaming market now dominated by Netflix Inc., Amazon.com Inc. and Hulu LLC. Walt Disney Co. is preparing an online service with Star Wars and Marvel shows, and it will launch around the same time. And Jeffrey Katzenberg has a new short-form video project in the works.
Reilly’s job is to create something that can stand out.
“I am confident that we will bring to market a world class direct-to-consumer product that uses all of our assets in new and compelling ways,” Stankey said.
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