People/Biz

Authentic Entertainment co-founder, CEO Lauren Lexton exits

Lauren Lexton, founder and CEO of Authentic Entertainment is leaving the company after 18 years, with former head of development Helga Eike set to return to the company as its president. Since ...
July 17, 2018

Lauren Lexton, founder and CEO of Authentic Entertainment is leaving the company after 18 years, with former head of development Helga Eike set to return to the company as its president.

Since co-founding Authentic Entertainment in 2000 with Tom Rogan, Lexton (pictured left) has worked across more than 80 unscripted series for more than 20 different networks. In 2010, Lexton and Rogan sold Authentic to Endemol (now Endemol Shine). Lexton would later rise to become sole CEO of Authentic in August 2015 following Rogan’s departure from the company.

Over Authentic’s history, Lexton has overseen the creation and production of such hit programs as Ace of Cakes, Knife Fight, Here Comes Honey Boo Boo, Toddlers & Tiaras and TLC’s reboot of Trading Spaces.

“Lauren has developed and produced some of the most iconic unscripted series of the last two decades and helped build Authentic Entertainment into one of the leading production companies in our industry,” said Endemol Shine North America CEO Cris Abrego in a statement. “We are all truly thankful for her many contributions.”

Abrego continued: “While we say a fond farewell to Lauren, we are happy to welcome Helga back to the studio that she helped lead to tremendous success, developing many of Authentic’s top series during her previous tenure.”

Eike (right) returns to the Endemol Shine North America subsidiary two years after departing to launch Red Bandit Media with ITV America, which went on to produce such series as Food Network’s Texas Cake House and TLC’s I Should Have Known. Prior to this, she had spent 10 years working at Authentic as the production outfit’s SVP of development.

Before Authentic and Red Bandit, Eike spent seven years as a freelance producer, director and writer in unscripted television, based in both New York and Los Angeles.

“Helga helped build Authentic, so it’s perfect that she will now run it. She’s one of the smartest people I know and I’m excited to see her take Authentic to new heights. I can’t imagine a better story to tell than this one,” added Lexton. “I’m also thrilled that Authentic will continue to be a female-led company.”

About The Author
Barry Walsh is editor and content director for realscreen, and has served as editor of the publication since 2009. With a career in entertainment media that spans two decades, prior to realscreen, he held the associate editor post for now defunct sister publication Boards, which focused on the advertising and commercial production industries. Before Boards, he served as editor of Canadian Music Network, a weekly music industry trade, and as music editor for HMV.com. As content director, he also oversees the development of content for the brand's market-leading events, the Realscreen Summit and Realscreen West, as well as new content initiatives.

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