Satellite

Hill Named DirecTV Entertainment President

3/17/2005 8:51 AM Eastern

DirecTV Inc. said Thursday that David Hill has been named president of its new DirecTV Entertainment group.

Hill had been chairman and CEO of Fox Sports. He will continue to serve as chairman of the programmer in a non-executive role, with his primary responsibility being at DirecTV.

After Mitch Stern’s surprise resignation last week from the CEO post at DirecTV, rumors began to surface that Hill would play a role at the direct-broadcast satellite provider. But Hill’s new position at the company -- which makes him responsible for all programming, including third-party programming and original content, plus the development and marketing of programming packages -- is broader than some observers had expected.

Hill will also be charged with developing and expanding DirecTV’s advertising-sales operations, in addition to other new revenue opportunities, DirecTV said.

DirecTV Entertainment is one of three new operating groups created by CEO Chase Carey “as part of a new, more streamlined organization that will focus on DirecTV's core businesses and continue to build on its leadership position in the pay television industry,” the company said in a release.

The direct-broadcast satellite provider also named presidents for the other two new operating groups, DirecTV Sales and Service and DirecTV Latin America and New Enterprises.

John Suranyi, the new president of Sales and Service, had been executive vice president of customer satisfaction. And Bruce Churchill, the new president of Latin America and New Enterprises, had been DirecTV Group Inc. chief financial officer and DirecTV Latin America president.

And the company announced that DirecTV CFO Mike Palkovic will assume CFO duties for the entire DirecTV Group.

Hill, Suranyi, Churchill and Palkovic all report to Carey.

“David is a true innovator and an enormously talented executive who has distinguished himself with his creativity and originality in the television industry," Carey said of Hill in a prepared statement. “His proven capabilities, vision and experience, which transcends sports television, will be vital in taking DirecTV to the next level.”

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