WBD cut-backs see veteran execs Latman & Daniels exit US Networks Group

Trixie Motel

The ongoing restructuring at Warner Bros. Discovery (WBD) continues, with Jane Latman and Nancy Daniels among the latest high-profile casualties as cut-backs hit the US networks arm.

The latest round of exits came from the Kathleen Finch-led division, with Latman, president of home & food content for HGTV and Food Network, and Daniels, who oversaw content for TNT, TBS, Discovery Channel, Animal Planet and Science Channel, departing.

Latman expanded her role to include Food Network in March, following Courtney White’s exit to launch Butternut. Having joined the company back in 2003, she took the reins at HGTV in 2019, overseeing shows including Home Town Takeover, Celebrity IOU and Rock the Block, as well as Discovery+ originals such as Trixie Motel and Kendra Sells Hollywood.

Daniels, meanwhile, has been with the company for 15 years, taking the leadership of the Turrner Networks in May and overseeing shows including Deadliest Catch and Love Off The Grid.

Also leaving WBD are Matthew Butler, who oversees Travel Channel content, and Scott Lewers, who is responsible for franchise series expansions and tentpole programming at Discovery networks and the former Turner networks.

Finch, chairman and CCO of WBD’s US Networks Group, announced the departures in a memo to staff on Friday, in which she said that the company needs “to make additional adjustments for the future as we evolve to a more streamlined operating model.”

Following Latman’s exit, Betsy Sanner Ayala take on responsibility for Food Network content, while Loren Ruch will oversee HGTV, with both reporting directly to Finch.

Howard Lee will meanwhile oversee content for Discovery, Animal Planet and Science Channel, alongside his current role heading up TLC, while Jason Sarlanis, who oversees ID and crime content at HLN, will take on Daniel’s TNT, TBS and TruTV remit.

The changes “will ultimately enable our business to run more effectively and collaboratively across all the brands and business functions while maintaining our robust culture of content creation and powerful storytelling,” said Finch in her memo.

“Unfortunately, the changes required will include the elimination of some positions within our content teams and of some long time leaders who have been a big part of the company for many years,” she wrote.

The changes comes as part of a wider cost-cutting effort at WBD that has seen content written off and staff levels slashed, with a wave of redundancies in October hitting around 125 positions at Warner Bros. Television Group (WBTVG) as part of the ongoing restructuring. The company laid off 14% of HBO and HBO Max staff – around 70 people – in August, with unscripted and live-action family programming hit the hardest.

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