A little over a year after being hired by AT&T CEO John Stankey to run WarnerMedia, Jason Kilar is looking for the exit, according to a report from The New York Times. Stankey announced that Discovery and WarnerMedia would be merging in a shocking media announcement today while avoiding multiple questions about Kilar’s future role at the company.
Jason Kilar has hired a legal team to negotiate his departure as chief executive of WarnerMedia, according to two people briefed on the matter. AT&T, which owns WarnerMedia, said on Monday that it had agreed to spin off the division and merge it with a rival media company, Discovery Inc. Mr. Kilar was kept in the dark about the deal until recent days, the people said, speaking on the condition of anonymity to discuss private conversations.
This comes after subscribers for their HBO Max service seemingly wasn’t doing as great as other competitors and WarnerMedia sacrificed hefty budgeted blockbusters to hand-out a free month of access to new releases on HBO Max as part of their controversial day-and-date release model. There were also reports like the one at Bloomberg that Kilar was earning more than his boss at AT&T, another controversy as most studios were hemorrhaging money last year making the pay-bump a bit ridiculous.
While speaking on CNBC, business journalist Kara Swisher had more dire perspective on the news saying that John Stankey is simply wasting shareholder money trying to catch-up with mega-streamers like Netflix, Amazon, and Disney. It should be noted this is simply an opinion but this is also coming from someone with years of experience covering these kinds of stories.
SOURCE: THE NEW YORK TIMES