ViacomCBS Moves Pop TV Under Chris McCarthy, Brad Schwartz to Remain President

Bellator MMA to shift under Showtime Sports president Stephen Espinoza

Last Updated: January 15, 2020 @ 3:30 PM

ViacomCBS has shuffled oversight of its cable network Pop TV and MMA outfit, Bellator. Pop TV will move under Chris McCarthy, while Bellator — which produces MMA events and manages a roster of fighters — will now be under President of Showtime Sports Stephen Espinoza.

In November, McCarthy gained oversight of TV Land, Paramount Network and Smithsonian Channel and was named president of entertainment and youth brands. McCarthy also oversees MTV, VH1, CMT and Logo. Brad Schwartz will remain as Pop TV president.

The news comes one day TheWrap reported that ViacomCBS was in “advanced talks” with George Cheeks for a senior role at CBS, potentially to succeed Joe Ianniello as the head of all CBS assets. Cheeks recently stepped down as vice chairman of NBCUniversal Content Studios.

Viacom and CBS completed their merger last December. The news was first reported by Variety.

“It’s been really great watching you from afar. And it’s not just because “Schitt’s Creek” is one of my favorite shows – it’s that from an outsider’s perspective, Pop shares many of the qualities of our brands – a passion for great characters, inventive storytelling and a desire to entertain and make people laugh,” McCarthy said in an internal memo. “I’m excited to meet you, learn more about what you do and what makes Pop as special as it is.  You must have lots of questions, and while I don’t have all the answers yet, I look forward to connecting in the days and weeks ahead.”

Additionally, ViacomCBS restructured its ad sales team under Jo Ann Ross. David Lawenda, who previously served as executive vice president, digital sales and sales strategy, CBS, will be executive vice president, sales, digital video and interactive, ViacomCBS, responsible for digital video and branded content across all ViacomCBS platforms as well as social influencer sales.

John Bogusz will continue in his role as executive vice president, sports sales and Marketing, CBS Network Sales, overseeing sales for sports across the CBS Television Network and CBS Sports Network. Louis Carr will continue in his role as president, Media Sales, BET, responsible for linear and digital advertising sales and integrated marketing for BET.

As a result, senior executives Valerie Bischak, Mary Ellen Bottone, Rich Calacci, Michael DuPont, Bryson Gordon and David Paschkes will leave the company.

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