NEW YORK — NBC has named Mark Begor senior VP and chief financial officer, replacing Warren Jenson, who is leaving NBC to join Delta Air Lines.
Begor, 39, comes to NBC from another division of the network’s parent company General Electric, GE Investor Communications, where he was VP.
As CFO, Begor will oversee NBC’s financial planning and operations, as well as play a role in the company’s strategic business initiatives.
Though he’s new to the broadcast network industry, Begor said he’s well aware that networks are having an extremely difficult time controlling programming costs. Begor said NBC makes the numbers work by diversifying into businesses beyond just the broadcast network.
“The network does have cost pressures in certain areas, but the good news is that the network is only one out of four legs on the chair,” Begor said. The four legs on NBC’s chair are the network, the owned-and-operated stations, cable networks CNBC and MSNBC and international holdings, such as the recently cut joint venture with Dow Jones.
Begor believes that his extensive international experience is part of what made him an attractive candidate to NBC president Robert Wright, to whom Begor reports. Begor has worked in Singapore, London, Milan, Paris and Sydney.
Begor acknowledged that he has a lot to learn about the entertainment industry, but he said that GE, as a company, believes that finance is a transportable competency across a company.
Part of Begor’s new job will be looking for potential acquisitions or joint ventures. He said that NBC is on the lookout to buy more TV stations and expand its cable and international businesses.
Begor was appointed a GE Co. officer in December 1996, after spending two years as GE’s manager of investor communications.
He began his career with GE in 1980 in the company’s financial management program. He became a member of the GE corporate audit staff in 1983, rising to the post of executive audit manager in 1987. Begor moved to GE Plastics in 1989 to become manager of operations analysis and financial support, and he eventually rose to the position of general manager of GE Plastics.