Changes at the top levels of Turner Broadcasting: David Levy adds distribution arm Turner Network Sales to ad sales and sports, a consolidated role that gives him responsibility for Turner’s domestic revenue. Andy Heller, who has headed distribution for the cable programmer for 11 years, moves up to vice chairman — charged with coordinating the TV Everywhere initiative championed by Time Warner (NYSE: TWX) Chairman and CEO Jeff Bewkes. At the same time, Coleman Breland has been promoted to COO of Turner Network Sales, with day-to-day responsibility reporting to Levy.
With this portfolio in hand, Levy could be seen as the natural successor to Phil Kent, Turner’s chairman and CEO. He will oversee direct advertising sales strategy and operations and all affiliate sales, marketing promotion, interactive television and technology business development across the Turner nets including CNN, TNT, TBS, and Cartoon Network.
But Heller’s role may be the most intriguing. If anyone can lace together the myriad interests needed to make Bewkes’s vision of TV Everywhere reality, it would be Heller. His background includes senior stints at HBO, Time Warner Cable (NYSE: TWC) and Turner. And, as Kent said in a memo describing the move, he is a “skilled, respected and successful negotiator.”
It may be a convenient opportunity but it is one that should fit him well; he has connections and experience across nearly every major constituency. Also from Kent’s memo: “Andy’s responsibilities will include working with Jeff Bewkes, other Time Warner corporate and division executives and me to develop an operating model that advantages consumers and content providers.”