Los Angeles-based LATV is
undergoing major changes to its top management team, including the upcoming departure
of founder and president Danny Crowe, whose contract, which expires Jan. 11,
will not be renewed.
Also out from the
Hispanic-targeted network is Starrett Berry, the longtime affiliate-relations
executive who helped transform LATV from a three-hour programming block in Los
Angeles to a nationwide property distributed via multicast, reaching more than
40 million households in markets including New York, Dallas and Chicago.
Berry, who was instrumental in reaching a multicast
distribution deal for LATV with Tribune Broadcasting, was laid off on Friday, Nov. 13. Berry began working with LATV in 2003, first as a consultant
and then as vice president of affiliate sales.
The company has not yet made a
formal announcement about the executive changes. But in an interview with
Hispanic TV Update, LATV chief operating officer Luca Bentivoglio said the economy
and an overall bad year for business were mostly to blame.
"Starrett has done an
incredible job at LATV," said Bentivoglio. "He was one of the pioneers of the
whole multicast distribution trend." But he was also a victim of a company-wide
effort to seek efficiencies and minimize costs, he said.
Berry's responsibilities will now be handled by American
Latino Syndication (ALS), the team that handles syndication agreements for
American Latino and LatiNation, the wholly-owned syndication properties LATV
acquired in 2008 from AIM Tell-a-Vision.
Leading sales and distribution, as well as ALS, is David Morales,
an LATV vice president and executive producer of American Latino TV and LatiNation.
network, which earlier this year moved to an all-Spanish-language format, is
also set to release national ratings for the first time, as Nielsen began
measuring LATV national audiences on Sept. 28. The new data, said Bentivoglio,
is expected to show "significant increases" for LATV.