Warner Bros. Discovery has named Luis Silberwasser, a former exec at Discovery, Telemundo and most recently TelevisaUnivision, as chairman and CEO of its sports division.
Reporting to CEO David Zaslav, Silberwasser will lead the company’s domestic sports portfolio and oversee a unified, global sports strategy. The newly merged company brings together Discovery’s sports operation outside of the U.S. and assets like Eurosport with the domestic portfolio including Turner Sports and digital brand Bleacher Report. Along with the Olympics, the company has rights to the NBA, NHL, Major League Baseball and the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament.
Silberwasser is segueing from his position as president of TelevisaUnivision. From 2014 to 2018, he was head of Telemundo Networks.
A number of executives were considered for the position in recent months, but one aspect of Silberwasser’s background that likely appealed to Zaslav was familiarity. Earlier in his career, the newly appointed exec spent 16 years at Discovery, rising to the position of EVP and chief content officer for the company’s international networks division, where his responsibilities included sports. Zaslav ran Discovery as CEO from 2007 to its merger with WarnerMedia, which closed last month.
“I have known Luis for many years and have tremendous respect for how hard he works, how collaborative he approaches the job, and his ability to build very successful global businesses and brands,” Zaslav said in a press release.
“I am delighted to join Warner Bros Discovery during an exciting and innovative time especially for its newly integrated global sports business and the great team at the company which boasts some of the most compelling on-air talent, world class production values and the broadest media rights in the world,” Silberwasser said.
Turner Sports president Lenny Daniels and regional sports networks chief Patrick Crumb will both report to Silberwasser. Andrew Georgiou, president and managing director of WBD Sports Europe, will continue to report to international president Gerhard Zeiler.
Through Eurosport Networks and its BT Sports joint venture, the company has rights to the Olympics, PGA Tour, ATP World Tour, as well as cycling, tennis and soccer matches. In Latin American countries, sports rights include UEFA and several local soccer leagues. The company’s four sports streaming services include Eurosport Player, which operates in 52 European markets.
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