Longtime Disney/ABC Television Group digital chief Albert Cheng is leaving the company. After 10 years as the the company’s digital media czar, Cheng informed his staff about his plans late Friday but will remain through May to ease the transition, ABC confirmed. Cheng said he felt it was time to move on after achieving goals of distributing Disney/ABC programming multiple platforms online and on demand.
Under Cheng’s guidance ABC began Internet streaming of series back in 2006. “We were streaming video before streaming became cool,” he noted. ABC also partnered with Apple to include a video-streaming app for the launch of the iPad in 2010. Cheng was hired by recently departed Disney/ABC Media exec Anne Sweeney to shepherd the company’s transition and expansion into the digital realm. Sweeney’s replacement Ben Sherwood praised Cheng’s contributions as “significant and far-reaching.” Cheng joined Disney’s cable division in 2000 as VP of national accounts and distribution strategy.