Hannes Heyelmann, Warner Bros. Discovery executive VP and general manager for Germany, Switzerland and Austria, has stepped down from his role.
The move comes after Warner Bros. Discovery EMEA boss Priya Dogra left the company after almost 14 years last month. Dogra’s departure came just weeks after the exit of Robert Blair, president of international TV distribution, who left the company after 25 years. Dogra and Blair’s roles were not replaced.
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In an internal memo to staff seen by Variety, Gerhard Zeiler, WBD’s international president, wrote:
“When we launched the newly merged Warner Bros. Discovery in April last year, we did so with the ambition to be a top global entertainment company and we are making good progress towards our goals.
In reviewing our plans for EMEA moving forward, Hannes Heyelmann has advised me of his decision to resign from his role of EVP, General Manager for Germany, Switzerland, and Austria.
Hannes will stay in his role until the end of October, so that we have time to make a final decision about the future leadership in the region. More to come within the next weeks.
Hannes originally joined Turner in Atlanta, quickly rising to SVP, MD for Central and Eastern Europe and International Original Programming Strategy and then EVP Programming, EMEA for WarnerMedia. One of his many outstanding achievements was to produce local fictional series for the first time for pay TV stations in Germany. All of those were incredible successes, resulting in many awards and an outstanding perception of our Networks.
I am extremely grateful to Hannes for his contribution and leadership in one of our most important, complex, and exciting regions, which as you know is close to my heart. And while it is always sad to say goodbye to highly talented and well-loved colleagues, I am thankful for the journey we have been on together. Reaching over 20 years in this business and being so successful in a variety of roles is an incredible achievement. I would like to offer my sincere thanks and congratulations to Hannes for the impact he has made, and I know you will all join me in wishing Hannes all the very best for the future.”
Heyelmann said: “It has been a great privilege to be part of Warner Bros. Discovery for the past 22 years. I have many wonderful memories from the different roles I have held, starting in the corporate strategy team in the U.S., launching pay networks from scratch in Germany and pushing local productions, overseeing the EMEA network and streaming programming strategy and most recently as the GM for WBD in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.
I’m very thankful that I had the opportunity to work with such talented and dedicated teams over the years – without whom our successes would not have been possible. I am also appreciative of the support I have received from leadership throughout my career. I am looking forward to taking a break, spending more time with my family, and deciding what I want to do next professionally.”
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