Charter Communications has recruited Cablevision alum Tom Montemagno to oversee programming acquisitions for the newly enlarged cable giant.
Montemagno will serve as exec VP of programming acquisitions, reporting to senior exec VP David Ellen. Ellen is another Cablevision alum who joined Charter in July, on the heels of the completion of the company’s $78 billion acquisition of Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks. Ellen and Montemagno previously worked with Charter CEO Tom Rutledge during his tenure as COO of Cablevision.
Montemagno will have his hands full as Charter, now the No. 2 cable operator behind Comcast and No. 3 MVPD behind DirecTV and Comcast, has big carriage renewal deals looming with heavyweights including 21st Century Fox and Time Warner. Those deals will be more complex than ever as programmers seek greater compensation for VOD and streaming rights.
Meanwhile, Charter is under pressure to leverage its size into more favorable terms with content providers. Charter’s post-merger dealings with programmers have already sparked lawsuits from Univision and Fox News, which have accused Charter of failing to live up to the terms of its pre-merger contract agreements.
Montemagno’s “negotiating ability will serve Charter extremely well as it continues to deliver its traditional video products with cost discipline,” Ellen said. “And his deep understanding of today’s complex rights structures will better position Charter to roll out innovative video product offerings that meet new needs.”
Andrew Rosenberg, the TW Cable programming alum who made the move to Charter earlier this year, will serve as Montemagno’s deputy, Ellen said.