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NBCUniversal’s new leader Mike Cavanagh shakes up top rankings

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Mike Cavanagh is starting to make his mark on NBCUniversal.

Mr Kavanagh took over the company In April, he announced on Thursday that he would give Donna Langley, the company’s head of film, overall oversight of creative decisions for the company’s entertainment content, including its movies and TV shows. Peacock streaming service. Mark Lazarus, chairman of NBCUniversal television and streaming, was also promoted as he has broader authority over business decisions for some of the company’s creative content.

Other executives remaining on Kavanagh’s leadership team include Cesar Conde, chairman of NBCUniversal News Corp., who will oversee Telemundo and NBC local stations, and Mark Woodbury, the company’s head of parks.

Kavanagh is effectively sifting through the number of executives who report directly to him, thereby streamlining the company’s leadership. He will also continue to work directly with Adam Miller, Executive Vice President, who oversees Operations and Technology, as well as Communications, Human Resources and Corporate Social Responsibility; Kim Harris, Corporate General Counsel; Anand Kini, Chief Financial Officer, NBCUniversal; Craig Robinson ( Craig Robinson, Executive Vice President and Chief Diversity Officer.

The promotion is the first major step Mr. Kavanagh has taken since assuming leadership of the company. Its former CEO Jeff Shell (Jeff Shell) step down Following an investigation into sexual harassment.

The change will allow NBCUniversal to better compete in a business environment rife with cord-cutting (ditching traditional pay TV) and new competitors, Kavanagh said in an internal memo.

“I’m excited to be working with this team to build on our tremendous momentum and move NBCU forward,” he wrote.

As part of the restructuring, NBCUniversal chairman of television and streaming entertainment content Susan Rovner is leaving the company, Kavanagh wrote. Frances Berwick will be promoted to Chairman of NBCUniversal Entertainment, reporting to Mr. Lazarus and Ms. Langley.

Since taking over from Mr. Shell, Mr. Kavanagh has toured the company’s offices in Los Angeles, New York and London, and met stars such as “The Tonight Show” host Jimmy Fallon. He primarily seeks to continue business as usual, telling those he works with that all will remain the same while the company absorbs Mr Shell’s departure.

Mr. Kavanagh had to navigate unexpected turbulence during his brief tenure in the role, including the unexpected departure of Linda Yaccarino, the company’s head of ad sales, who left NBCUniversal to become Twitter’s chief executive. official. When Ms. Yacarino exited, the company was preparing for its annual pitch to advertisers, an upfront fee that accounts for a significant portion of the company’s revenue that year.

In promoting Ms. Langley, NBCUniversal is betting on a seasoned creative executive with a string of recent box office successes. Along with Chris Meledandri, CEO of animation studio Illumination, Ms. Langley co-wrote such hits as Super Mario Bros. Gross It grossed more than $1 billion at the box office, and last year’s Minions: Rise of Gru grossed more than $900 million worldwide.

Mr. Lazarus is responsible for NBCUniversal’s television networks and the company’s streaming business, where he has been with the company for more than a decade. During his tenure at the firm, Mr. Lazarus was responsible for closing deals with the Olympics, the National Football League and the Premier League, and has been a driving force in the development of the firm’s major NFL program, Sunday Night Football.

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