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Amid CNN Cuts and Layoffs, Time Warner Boss Promises Growth

jeff_bewkes-300x300As CNN employees learned of more layoffs and show cancellations, Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes was addressing investors in another part of the Time Warner Center, promising huge growth in the company’s earnings.

Plans for growing revenue include added spending for original programming, reports The New York Times:

Another concern is Turner, the home to CNN, TBS and TNT. The group of cable networks has faced ratings declines, and Turner has said it would expand its original programming in response. The company said that it would double its investment in original programming to $1 billion by 2018 from about $500 million. “We need to do more with more impact,” John Martin, the chief executive of Turner, said.

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Phil Kent To Step Down as CEO Of Turner Broadcasting, John Martin To Assume Top Role

Phil Kent, John Martin

Breaking: The chairman and CEO of Turner Broadcasting, Phil Kent, will step down from the CEO role when his contract ends next year, he announced in a memo to staff today.

Time Warner CFO John Martin will take over as CEO of the unit on January 1, 2014, with Kent staying on as chairman for a transition period. Time Warner owns Turner Broadcasting, a unit that includes the CNN networks, TBS, TNT, Turner Sports, Cartoon Network and Adult Swim.

“A dozen years is a long run in a top leadership position, particularly in such a dynamic and fast-changing industry as ours,” Kent wrote in a memo to staff today, obtained by TVNewser. “I’m very proud of Turner’s business results over the past decade. But I’m equally proud of the culture that we have built together to foster creativity, collaboration and risk-taking in the pursuit of excellence.”

Martin, like Kent, will report to Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes.

“John is one of the most capable and strategically-minded executives I know,” Bewkes said in a statement. “As CFO, he led the design and implementation of our financial strategy that has helped Time Warner deliver superior shareholder returns. But he is also a broad and thoughtful business thinker whose inclusive management style and focus on driving the business forward will fit well with the Turner tradition. I have great confidence he will build on the success Phil has achieved to take Turner to even greater heights.”

More below, including Kent’s letter to staff.

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ESPN Names Three Studio Analysts For Women's World Cup Coverage

Brandi Chastain, Briana Scurry and Tony DiCicco will join ESPN as studio analysts for the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2011 (June 26-July 17).

The three members of the 1999 FIFA Women’s World Cup winning U.S. team will appear on the network’s coverage of the three-week tournament along with participating in studio segments on SportsCenter, First Take and ESPNEWS.

“Brandi, Briana and Tony are among the best minds and most recognizable faces for women’s soccer anywhere in the world,” said Jed Drake, ESPN senior vice and executive producer, production. “Their ability to draw from past experiences will give our viewers the best insight on what these exceptional athletes are going through on the biggest stage of their careers.”

Joakim Noah Apologizes For Hurling Gay Slur At Fan

Learning nothing from Kobe Bryant, Chicago Bulls center Joakim Noah was caught on camera yelling at gay slur at a fan during Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Finals.

“A fan said something, and I said something back,” Noah said on the first quarter incident, “I apologized. I don’t know what’s going to happen. I got caught up. I didn’t mean any disrespect to anybody.”

I think Bryant can tell you what’s going to happen next, Joakim.