Ann Sarnoff Out at WarnerMedia as Discovery Merger Nears Closing

WarnerMedia studios and networks group chairman and CEO Ann Sarnoff is exiting her post, sources tell Variety.

Sarnoff was informed by leadership on Tuesday that her position would be eliminated, one insider said. The ground is shifting rapidly for executives and other divisions at the media giant as it nears completion of its merger with Discovery.

“I want to thank Ann for all of her leadership during a transformational period for the company and our industry. She has been a passionate and committed steward of the world’s most formidable creative engine and has led with integrity, focus and hard work in bringing WarnerMedia’s businesses, brands and workforce closer together,” said David Zaslav, the incoming CEO of the merged Warner Bros. Discovery.

Sarnoff joined the company in 2019, and counted a massive portfolio of brands under her purview, including the Warner Bros. Pictures Group, HBO and HBO Max, Warner Bros. Television, DC, WB Animation, TBS, TNT, and the Harry Potter Wizarding World. She also oversaw the consumer products and experiences division.

“There is a lot of exciting momentum at the company and I appreciate all of her counsel and partnership the last few months putting us in a position to succeed as we launch Warner Bros. Discovery. We all wish her great success in the future,” Zaslav concluded.

News of Sarnoff’s exit comes on the heels of WarnerMedia CEO Jason Kilar’s Tuesday resignation.Sarnoff’s stepping down has been expected for months as Zaslav looks to restructure the vast content group. More high-profile exits are expected in the coming days.

Prior to WarnerMedia, Sarnoff served as president of BBC Studios Americas. There she drove growth and profit across the company’s divisions in the U.S., Canada and Latin America. Her notable achievement there was the launch of BritBox, an SCVOD service owned by BBC Studios and ITV that aggregated the largest collection of British television in the U.S.

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