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More Job Cuts Hit Court TV

7/27/2006 9:44 AM Eastern

While the cable ad-sales upfront auction continues, another round of job cuts at Court TV following its acquisition by Time Warner Inc. claimed the legal channel’s top advertising-sales executive, Charlie Collier, and several of his staff members.

Collier, the network’s executive vice president and general manager of ad sales, was one of about one-dozen staffers, including workers in the human-resources and legal departments, whose jobs were eliminated Thursday.

Several people within Court TV and Time Warner’s Turner Broadcasting System said Court TV’s entire ad-sales department had been eliminated. That department was said to number about 30 people. But there is said to be an equal number of open positions in Turner’s ad-sales unit, and Turner has “absolutely encouraged” Court employees in that field to apply for those jobs, a Turner official said.

Most or all would be located in New York, where Court TV is based, not Turner’s headquarters in Atlanta.

About one-dozen people definitively left Court TV Thursday, a person familiar with the organizations said.
Coupled with departures last month in affiliate relations, corporate communications, finance and accounting, more than 60 Court TV workers have lost their positions since Time Warner bought the one-half of the service it didn’t own from Liberty Media in May for $735 million.

People familiar with the proceedings indicated that the bulk of the acquisition attrition has now taken place. “They’re pretty much done with their review. There might be one or two more, but for the most part, this should be the last big round,” said one person inside the media giant.

Court TV -- which lost top affiliate executives Bob Rose and Ellen Schned in the first round of cuts last month -- had more than 400 employees before it was bought. Former chairman and CEO Henry Schleiff is now serving as the network’s nonexecutive chairman.

Turner officials declined to say if more cuts were yet to be made.
 
“Since the announcement in May that Court TV would join Turner Broadcasting, we have utilized a thoughtful and strategic process to integrate the two companies,” Turner said in a prepared statement. “As expected, leveraging Turner’s resources to advantage Court TV has identified some job redundancy, and positions have been eliminated. We continue to work with affected colleagues through this process.”

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