Gerhard Zeiler, the chief executive of Europe’s largest commercial broadcasting group RTL, is leaving to take over international operations at Turner Broadcasting System, owner of Cartoon Network, CNN and TNT.
Zeiler who has led RTL for nine years, was seen by some as a rival to new CEO of parent Bertelsmann Thomas Rabe, but the company said he was leaving “by mutual and amicable consent” and “of his own request”.
Zeiler’s appointment signals TBS’s ambition to expand more aggressively outside the US through acquisitions and distribution deals.
Guillaume de Posch and Anke Schäferkordt will succeed him as co-CEOs. Guillaume de Posch, currently Chief Operating Officer of RTL Group, will take over responsibility for the Group’s broadcasting operations outside Germany, and the company’s production business. Anke Schäferkordt will continue to manage the German TV business in addition to her role as CEO of RTL Group.