WBD fires 70 HBO employees
Warner Bros. Discovery has fired around 70 employees at HBO and the HBO Max streaming service, accounting for 14% of the workforce.
WBD stock dropped on Friday after the media and entertainment conglomerate revealed dismal profits and cut profit estimates for the newly formed company.
The shares of the New York-based corporation slid $2.73, or 16%, to $14.74 per share as Wall Street reacted coolly to the company's second-quarter earnings report, the first complete earnings report since WarnerMedia assets combined with Discovery Inc. in a $43-billion merger.
According to The New York Times report, unscripted and live-action family content for HBO Max, the streaming service, was the most affected. Other cuts hit the casting, acquisitions, and foreign divisions of HBO Max.
Sarah Aubrey, the current head of original programming at HBO Max, will now focus on the Max Originals drama. She will now also engage on international programming planning with the Warner Bros Discovery International team, which is directed by Gerhard Zeiler. As the lead for Max Originals drama, Joey Chavez, senior VP Programming, will continue to report to Aubrey.
While at HBO Max, the team will now report to Amy Gravitt, HBO's head of comedy and executive VP of programming, which will now combine HBO and Max Original comedy under one roof. Suzanna Makkos, who was in charge of HBO Max comedy, will report to Gravitt.
The latest round of layoffs follows AT&T's WarnerMedia's April merger with Discovery. AT&T received $43 billion in cash debt securities and debt retention as part of the agreement.