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Time Warner dials new L.A. chief

Change due to consumer complaints

Facing hundreds of consumer complaints and confusion over its service, Time Warner Cable on Thursday ousted Roger Keating, its key executive in the Los Angeles area, and replaced him with Barry Rosenblum, a veteran of its New York operations.

The cable operator has been swamped with problems in Southern California as it has converted cable systems it acquired from Comcast and the bankrupt Adelphia into its own base of some 1.9 million customers. The complaints have ranged from interrupted Internet service to long waits on customer service lines to confusion over a new channel lineup.

The city of Los Angeles has threatened to find the operator in breach of its franchise agreement, and the city of West Hollywood may impose fines.

Keating oversaw the transition as the cable operator’s top exec in Southern California. Rosenblum, a 27-year veteran of the company who runs its New York ops, will now oversee both regions.

In a statement, the company said that the management changes are “designed to streamline the process and move it forward as expeditiously as possible.” Time Warner Cable reps have said that it has faced a hugely complicated task in piecing together what had been a patchwork of cable systems in the region, integrating everything from billing systems to Internet modems to emails.

In a conference call last month after releasing its quarterly results, Time Warner chief operating officer Jeff Bewkes acknowledged the rocky integration.

“We have had issues. One is related to channel lineup. Every time you change the lineup, you have to expect customers’ calls, and we got them. Second is the migration of high-speed data customers,” he said. “We are in the middle of resolving it. We will figure it out this year.”

Joining Rosenblum will be several members of his management team, including Stephen Pagano, president of the Albany, N.Y. division; Nina Facini, Rosenblum’s chief financial officer; and John Keib, Rosenblum’s chief marketing officer.

Time Warner Cable began trading as a separate company March 1 on the New York Stock Exchange.

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