Mr. Schneier, a 16-plus-year veteran who oversees ad sales, affiliate sales, research and integrated marketing for the A&E properties, said he is leaving to seek a new challenge and is weighing launching an independent film company and pursuing other executive posts at media and entertainment companies.
Whitney Goit, executive vice president ofp A&E Televison Networks, will take over for Mr. Schneier, effective immediately, with Mr. Schneier helping with the transition.
'Time for a change'
"I have had a wonderful career here," Mr. Schneier said. "I just came to a decision in the past six months that it was time for a change and to try a new adventure and have the opportunity to run a business."
Mr. Schneier, 49, is in preliminary discussions to serve as a partner in an independent film and production company that will focus on what he said would be "messages of hope and courage as well as addressing social issues."
He said other executive posts in the media/entertainment/technology fields may also draw his interest.
Mr. Schneier joined A&E as it was still finding its legs and has been involved in building both A&E and the more recently launched History Channel.
An ad sales force
A&E has become an ad sales force in cable, generating some $446 million last year, according to Taylor Nelson Sores' CMR, and offering marketers an upscale audience. The History Channel brought in $187 million according to CMR ,and has become a reliable avenue to reach men. Before A&E, Mr. Schneier was vice president of sales development and research for Business Times, a business show on ESPN before that network took on an all-sports format.