Betty founder leaving after 14 years

Liz Warner is leaving Discovery Communications-owned producer Betty 14 years after she founded the business.

Liz WarnerShe exits in April and her CEO position will not be replaced, with senior management now reporting into creative director Neil Smith. A director of programmes will additionally be hired.

Four years ago, Warner sold Betty to Discovery in what was at the time the cable giant’s first acquisition of a UK production company. Betty is behind shows such as Channel 4’s The Undateables and ITV’s Bear Grylls: Mission Survive.

It is now part of Lee Bartlett’s Discovery Studios Group, which soon be under the control of former Core Media Group president Marc Graboff, who joins in April. It sits outside the All3Media business that Discovery jointly acquired with Liberty Global last year.

“I have loved building a media business from scratch and I’m so proud of its creative achievements,” said Warner. “With some of the best people in television we have built a quality brand and it breathes though all of Betty’s output.

“I know the senior team will continue to deliver brilliant, high quality programmes and maintain the company ethos of respect and diversity which is such an important part of what we do.”

Bartlett said: “Under [Warner’s] stewardship, a strong leadership team has been developed which is well positioned to take the business forward, enabling it to continue to develop award-winning shows for audiences around the world. I am sure that we will work together again in the future.”

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