AMC Networks Names Interim Executive Chairman James Dolan’s Wife as New CEO

AMC Networks Feb. 15 announced that Kristin Dolan, wife of executive chairman James Dolan, has been named CEO of the media company, effective Feb. 17.  Ms. Dolan, who separated from her husband in 2018, is a longtime board member with more than 30 years of media and entertainment experience.

Kristin Dolan (LinkedIn photo)

Dolan’s hire comes after previous CEO Christina Spade exited the position 90 days after being hired, following a dispute with James Dolan over planned company layoffs. Ms. Dolan’s arrival comes during challenging times for AMC Networks, which has been challenged adapting to the streaming video-centric ecosystem.

AMC Networks ended the most-recent fiscal period with 11.1 million combined subscribers across AMC+, British-themed Acorn TV, horror-themed Shudder, Sundance Now, ALLBLK (formerly Urban Movie Channel) and the anime focused HiDive. That’s 45% fewer subs that NBCUniversal’s Peacock — the smallest subscriber major media SVOD platform.

Ms. Dolan most recently served as CEO of 605, the audience measurement and data analytics firm she founded in 2016. Prior to 605, Dolan spent 16 years in various operating roles at Cablevision Systems Corporation, the country’s No. 6 cable TV operator, including as chief operating officer.

“Kristin is a proven executive and operational leader with a track record driving organizational change, a history managing subscription-based businesses, and a deep understanding of audience engagement and advertising.,” Mr. Dolan said in a statement. “These are areas of critical importance as we transform our company and monetize our high-quality content.”

Indeed, legacy AMC Networks original content includes “The Walking Dead” franchise, “Breaking Bad” and spin-off “Better Call Saul,” “Hell on Wheels,” and “The Killing,” among others.

In addition to AMC Networks, Ms. Dolan serves as a member of the board of directors for Dolan-owned The Madison Square Garden Company (which owns the NBA’s New York Knicks and NHL’s New York Rangers, among other properties), The Wendy’s Company (as well as on Wendy’s audit and tech committees) and Revlon (on the audit committee).

AMC Networks reports fiscal results Feb. 17.

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