Turner Loses Another Top Executive, Programming Head for TNT and TBS

Michael Wright After Twelve Years at Company

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'The Last Ship'
'The Last Ship' Credit: TNT

Turner Broadcasting is losing yet another top executive, adding to the period of transition already underway as the company confronts ratings challenges and a changing TV industry. Michael Wright, president, programming for TNT, TBS and TCM, is stepping down, a person familiar with the situation confirmed on Thursday.

Mr. Wright, who is responsible for all programming for the networks, joined TNT in 2002 and has served in his current role since May 2012. Mr. Wright will remain at Turner, part of Time Warner, as the company searches for his replacement, the person said.

The news was reported earlier by Deadline.com.

The latest high-level departure comes as Turner looks to downsize its operations, offering voluntary buyouts to several hundred employees earlier in the week. Layoffs are expected to follow as part of CEO John Martin's "Turner 2020" initiative, so called for its goal of preparing Turner for the year 2020.

"In particular, some of our largest, most profitable and highest-profile networks have experienced ratings headwinds," Mr. Martin told staffers in a memo about the plan earlier this summer. "This is not news to the people who work at these businesses, or for that matter to anyone who follows the business of television."

Mr. Wright exits the company just months after the departure of Steve Koonin, president, Turner Entertainment Networks. Turner has yet to replace Mr. Koonin.

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