People/Biz

Discovery direct-to-consumer chief stepping down, executives promoted

Peter Faricy, Discovery Inc.’s CEO of global direct-to-consumer, will be stepping down from the company, Realscreen has confirmed. The news comes after “a few months of discussions,” Discovery CEO David Zaslav wrote ...
June 19, 2020

Peter Faricy, Discovery Inc.’s CEO of global direct-to-consumer, will be stepping down from the company, Realscreen has confirmed.

The news comes after “a few months of discussions,” Discovery CEO David Zaslav wrote in an internal memo to staff.

In lieu of a replacement, the media giant will elevate three DTC executives.

Avi Saxena, Karen Leever and Lisa Holme will now report directly to Zaslav, effective immediately.

“I want to thank Peter for all of his hard work, and contributions which have allowed us to make meaningful progress. But I also recognize, and am grateful for, his personal sacrifices over the last two years, much of which he has spent away from his family in Seattle. Peter has decided that time with his family will come first once travel starts up again,” Zaslav wrote.

Under Faricy’s (pictured) leadership, Zaslav said Discovery has built a “formidable foundation” to further deliver on its DTC strategy.

“One of his most significant achievements is the world-class leadership team he has helped us build across the DTC organization. Today, Discovery is fortunate to have such a strong, experienced and capable team. We have significantly more talent across tech, product and design, data and analytics, marketing, programming and operations and we will continue to invest in these critical areas,” Zaslav said.

Saxena will continue to lead all global technology while assuming responsibility for Food Network Kitchen and the Magnolia DTC product strategy, with Tyler Whitworth now reporting to him.

Leever, meanwhile, will continue to lead the company’s TV Everywhere/Discovery Go business and serve as the project and product lead around its aggregated app strategy in the U.S.

Holme, who recently boarded Discovery from Hulu to head up content and commercial strategy, will retain responsibility for all the content and programming strategies around Discovery’s aggregated app, as well as its partnership strategy.

JB Perette, president and CEO of Discovery International, will now assume oversight for Dplay and all of the company’s sports DTC offerings, as well as MotorTrend.

Going forward, Win Kolasastraseni, Alex Kaplan and Alex Wellen will report directly to Perette, effective immediately.

Kolasastraseni will continue to lead Dplay, which Zaslav wrote “will continue expanding into new markets and has huge potential to scale further with a compelling mix of entertainment and sports.”

“Given the global and sports-related connections of Discovery Golf and MotorTrend, we believe it makes the most sense to align these businesses with JB’s organization,” Zaslav stated.

Kaplan will continue to run Discovery Golf, which includes GolfTV and Golf Digest, and Wellen will maintain his oversight of MotorTrend.

Simon Wear, who heads GCN/Play Sports Network, will report into Andrew Georgiou in order to drive cycling as a “critical part” of Discovery’s sports portfolio.

“DTC is critical to our future, and I look forward to working even more closely with these exceptional executives, as well as the entire DTC organization. We will continue to drive strong communication and collaboration across all our DTC products and teams, as well as further develop key global DTC capabilities such as product and technology, performance marketing, data and analytics, and customers service – critical competencies we must master. I remain very confident about the power of our brands, appeal of our authentic talent, passion and loyalty of our fans, and our ability to transform the company to be successful in the new streaming ecosystem that is taking hold around the world,” Zaslav concluded in the internal note.

About The Author
Daniele Alcinii is a news editor at realscreen, the leading international publisher of non-fiction film and television industry news and content. He joined the RS team in 2015 with experience in journalism following a stint out west with Sun Media in Edmonton's Capital Region, and with communications work in Melbourne, Australia and Toronto. You can follow him on Twitter at @danielealcinii.

Menu

Search