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DeBitetto to run A+E Studios

A+E Networks is moving into in-house production as Bob DeBitetto is promoted to head newly created A+E Studios amid a raft of senior management promotions.

A+E senior managers

DeBitetto, previously president and general manager of A&E and Bio channels, is now president of brand strategy and business development at fledgling A+E Studios.

The production arm will create content for all A+E’s networks and platforms as well as overseeing brand strategy across the company. DeBitetto will continue to be responsible for the company’s feature doc unit A&E IndieFilms.

David McKillop steps up from executive VP of programming for A&E and Bio to executive VP and general manager of A&E as a result. He has recently overseen ratings smash Duck Dynasty and executive produced long-running series Storage Wars for A&E.

The moves come as new president and CEO Nancy Dubuc puts together her senior management team. Dubuc took up the job at the start of the month, replacing Abbe Raven who has become chairman of the board.

Dirk Hoogstra is being rewarded for the outstanding performance of History with a promotion to executive VP and general manager of History and H2. It’s his second promotion of the year following his elevation in March to executive VP of development and programming for History and H2.

Hoogstra joined History in 2007, having started his career with Discovery Communications in 1995, and has since overseen huge ratings success, notably with the record-breaking fact-based drama Hatfields & McCoys last year and, more recently, The Bible and Vikings.

Meanwhile, Robert Sharenow is stepping up from executive VP of programming at Lifetime to become the network’s executive VP and general manager.

And as previously reported, former BBC Worldwide (BBCWW) high-flyer Jana Bennett is joining the company as president of the Bio and LMN networks. There she will oversee development, strategies, marketing and brand development for the two networks.

Most recently she was president of BBCWW networks and the global BBC iPlayer before leaving at the end of last year in a corporate restructure. She also previously managed Discovery’s female-skewing lifestyle network TLC.

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