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Bennett exits History to launch prodco

History president and general manager Jana Bennett is leaving the cablenet to launch a London- and New York City-based production outfit.

Jana Bennett

Bennett joined History operator A+E Networks in 2013 to work across its LMN channel and to launch FYI (fka Bio), ordering shows for the latter including Married at First Sight and Seven Year Switch.

She moved across to replace Dirk Hoogstra at History in September 2015, ordering shows such as scripted series Roots and forthcoming drama Knightfall.

History’s senior management will report to Paul Buccieri, president of A&E and History, in the interim while a replacement is sought.

Nancy Dubuc, A+E’s president and CEO, said in a note to staff that Bennett had approached her about starting “a new entrepreneurial venture aimed at creating the best of British and American content for both markets” in the spring.

“From launching FYI to wide acclaim, to growing LMN, to leading History back into growth and securing its position as a premium brand, Jana has been a valued member of the management team,” Dubuc added.

Bennett said: “Now that History is back to growth, it’s time for me to start my next chapter. This was a difficult decision and Nancy was incredibly understanding about my desire to spend some of my time in the UK.

“Having been lucky enough to have worked in media on both sides of the Atlantic, I’ll be leaving later this summer to set up my new venture based here and in London.”

Further details about Bennett’s new production outfit are under wraps but the exec said she would be splitting her time between the US and the UK.

Prior to A+E, Bennett had a 30-year career at the BBC and was president of Worldwide Networks and the Global BBC iPlayer. She also headed up TLC for Discovery Communications during its transformation.


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