The shakeout at NBC Universal is not yet done as it focuses increasingly on streaming entertainment and news.
So far this year, the conglomerate has laid off 130 employees working in and around Los Angeles, according to filings with the state of California. The layoffs are in addition to those put into effect last year, which culled about 300 workers as well. There have so far been no layoffs recorded out of the company’s New York headquarters.
A company representative could not be reached for comment on the layoffs, or whether there will be further staff reductions this year.
NBCU executives have, since last year, been making changes to the company in order to make streaming a more central part of the business, led by its own platform Peacock. Earlier this year, the company said it already had 33 million users of Peacock, collected in about eight months of operation.
Most of the layoffs have been focused on those employed within NBCU’s linear TV production, but also some in its film production. While sources said there have been some layoffs in its news division as well, those are thought to be relatively few in comparison with those in TV and film.
With the new investments in streaming, production teams once separated by responsibilities of either linear TV or streaming content were consolidated to cover both segments. Divisions divided between TV and news, as well as content and business, have also been largely combined or had previous walls separately them taken down. And many individual network heads have departed since last year, according to a report last year in The Hollywood Reporter.
All of the change has come under the leadership of new chief executive Jeff Shell, who took over NBCU in January 2020. He quickly changed up the executive ranks, putting Caesar Conde in charge of all NBC News networks. Longtime news head Andy Lack left the company altogether. Mark Lazarus then became chairman of TV and streaming, overseeing all such content, while remaining in charge of all NBC Sports.
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