RTVE’s president & content chief exit in ‘bloodletting’ at Spanish pubcaster

Elena Sánchez (RTVE)

Spain’s RTVE has dismissed its content chief Jose Pablo López, swiftly followed by its interim president Elena Sánchez, as tensions over pubcaster’s future reached new highs.

The departures of both execs comes amid ongoing disagreements between the pair, with former Telemadrid exec Lopez seeking to drive audiences with costlier entertainment programming.

Sánchez pushed against this, with the conflict coming to a head with the proposed move for David Broncano and his interview show La Resistencia, produced by El Terrat.

It had been due to move from Movistar Plus to RTVE, signalling a shift in focus for RTVE but also a significant investment of around €42m ($46m) for three seasons.

That deal was refused, however, by RTVE’s board, and the tension has now come to a head after Sanchez called for López’s dismissal at a board meeting yesterday.

The board duly obliged, but Roberto Lakidain – a board member representing Spanish political party Podemos – then also proposed to dismiss Sánchez as well.

That move was also supported by a majority of the board members, with Spanish newspaper El Mundo describing the developments as a “bloodletting” for the broadcaster.

RTVE’s board, which is made up of representatives from the main Spanish political parties, will now be led by an alternating president on a three- or six-month basis until a full-time replacement is named.

The drama unfolded at the same time as six of the eight board members were meeting for the final time, with their legal mandates ending yesterday.

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