AMC Networks is consolidating its distribution and affiliate operations with ad sales, promoting Kim Kelleher to the new role of chief commercial officer.
Josh Reader, who joined AMC Networks in 2011 and has been president of distribution and development since 2019, is exiting the company. He had previously informed top execs of his plan to run a new venture he has launched in the content creation and blockchain space. Reader plans to stay with AMC Networks through early 2023.
In her expanded role, Kelleher will report to Christina Spade, who recently became the company’s CEO after a stint as its CFO. As part of the realignment, three additional senior execs will now report to Kelleher: Roy Cho, who has been upped to EVP of distribution; Mike Pears, EVP of distribution and content sales; and Amy Leasca, SVP of partner management. Barbara Kalosieh, continuing in the key position of SVP of distribution, will report to Cho.
AMC Networks, parent of cable networks like AMC and IFC as well as streaming services like Shudder and Acorn TV, has projected that streaming will make up the majority of its revenue by 2025. The dual revenue stream of pay-TV continues to throw off significant cash but it is in secular decline as cord-cutting accelerates. In 2020, the company cut about 10% of its workforce in anticipation of that transition, and longtime CEO Josh Sapan and COO Ed Carroll departed the company in 2021.
“A cohesive, forward-looking commercial revenue team that has responsibility for all of our valuable partner relationships across advertisers, affiliates and new digital platforms makes strong strategic sense and Kim is the perfect executive to lead it,” Spade said. “She has brought her own unique talent, ingenuity and dynamic leadership to our commercial revenue group. We are thrilled to apply her abilities to an even more comprehensive role to drive the company’s top-line growth. Josh Reader is a valued colleague who has made a significant contribution to our success and positioned us well for the future. We are grateful for his leadership and we wish him great success in his new venture.”
Kelleher joined the company in 2019 as president of commercial revenue and partnerships after previously holding senior posts at Condé Nast, SAY Media and Time. In addition to advertising, her AMC Networks purview has also included digital operations, integrated marketing and franchise development (including gaming, licensing and merchandising), publishing and e-commerce.
“I am emboldened by the opportunity to take on additional management responsibilities that help drive our business and move into a role that encompasses the entire portfolio of our premium distribution offerings and commercial relationships,” Kelleher said. “This fully integrated team will connect and leverage all of AMC Networks’ assets – our high-quality original programming, our loyal audiences and our strong subscriber services and brands – for our mutual benefit and value creation.”