Several executives have stepped down at New York-based media
company Juniper Content, parent company of Spanish-language kids' channel
Sorpresa, including its CEO.
Juniper chief financial officer Herb Roberts, now the
company's acting CEO, confirmed that longtime chairman and CEO Stuart B.
Rekant, also chairman of Sorpresa, is no longer with the company.
Roberts declined comment on the current state of Juniper and
said an official media statement should be released in the next few days. But a
source familiar with the company, who requested anonymity because he was not
authorized to comment, said several top executives have been let go. They include
senior vice president of programming MarÃa Badillo, the Mexico-born executive
who joined Sorpresa in 2007. She was named to Multichannel News's "40 Under 40" list of executives in 2008.
Badillo was not available for comment.
Juniper is said to be exploring several financing and
strategic alternatives, including the sale of Sorpresa, the TV network and
digital community launched in 2003 and carried by several U.S. MSOs.
In an April 16 statement, the company said it based the decision
on the "current challenging capital market environment and capital constraints."
A few days later, it also announced that it "deregistered" its securities
before the Securities and Exchange Commission, citing the "significant cost, in
both time and money, of compliance requirements attendant to its registration."
Juniper reported a net loss of $16,8 million for the year
ended December 2008, compared to a net loss of $6.3 million the previous year.
The increased loss, said the company, was attributable to impairment charges of
approximately $7 million, an increase in operating costs of services and a
decline in interest income.
which debuted in March 2003, is currently available in over 1 million homes and
is carried by Cablevision Systems, Charter Communications, Comcast, the
National Cable Telecommunications Cooperative, Cox Communications, Time Warner
Cable, Verizon Communications and in Puerto Rico on Liberty Cablevision,
Choice Cable TV and OneLink.