Britt to retire from TWC at year’s end; Marcus to take the helm
Time Warner Cable chairman and CEO Glenn Britt will retire at the end of the year. Time Warner Cable’s board announced Thursday afternoon that Robert Marcus was elected to succeed Britt as the company’s new chairman and CEO.
“I have had the privilege of being in this industry for more than 40 years and witnessing first-hand the most momentous evolution in communications technology ever experienced – we have truly been at the forefront of changing the way the world communicates,” Britt said. “I’m proud that we’ve built a great company by understanding consumer trends and changing technology and working to put the two together to develop products and services people want. I’m proud that we have returned significant value to our shareholders. And I’m most proud of the 52,000 TWC employees who come to work every day focused on meeting our customers’ needs. I admire their dedication, and it’s been a true pleasure to be their colleague for the past four decades.
The news wasn't much of a surprise as rumors have circulated that Britt was ready to retire. Marcus who is currently Time Warner Cable’s president and chief operating office, was an obvious choice to succeed Britt.
“I love this business, but I’m ready to retire knowing Rob is ready to lead,” Britt said. “I have worked with Rob for more than 20 years in his various roles, and worked side by side with him for nearly eight years as a member of the TWC senior management team. He is an accomplished executive, a strong strategic decision maker, and has a deep understanding of our company, our industry and what it will take to lead TWC into the future.”
Britt, 64, will stay on Time Warner Cable’s board in a non-executive role after he retires.
“Glenn has been an outstanding leader, transforming Time Warner Cable into an entertainment, communications and information powerhouse. He is a true visionary in the development and use of cutting-edge technology,” said N.J. Nicholas, Jr., lead director of Time Warner Cable’s Board. “The board is confident that Rob is the right person to lead the company into the future. He has the vision, financial prowess, operating acumen and unrelenting drive that make him the ideal CEO.
“The board is also very pleased that Glenn will remain chairman and CEO through 2013 as part of our thoughtful and seamless transition process.”
Media reports have swirled this summer that Britt was approached by Charter Communications CEO Tom Rutledge in regards to merging the two company’s, which was a plan endorsed by Liberty’s John Malone. Britt reportedly wasn’t interested in Rutledge’s pitch.
Britt became Time Warner Cable’s CEO in 2001 before the cable operator business was spun off from Time Warner Cable in 2009. During his tenure, Time Warner Cable has been a technological innovator with the introduction of high-speed Internet, VIOD and VoIP. Time Warner Cable launched its Start Over and Look Back services during Britt’s tenure, and both have proved to be popular with the company’s subscribers.
During Britt’s reign, Time Warner Cable, the nation’s second-largest cable operator, received eight technical Emmy Awards for its innovations. On the financial side, Britt oversaw Time Warner Cable’s emergence as a publicly traded company, and he’s grown it from a $6 billion operating division into a $21 billion national, high-profile business in a highly competitive industry.
Marcus, 48, joined Time Warner Inc. in 1998 and moved to Time Warner Cable in 2005. He was named chief financial officer in 2008.
He worked with Britt during Time Warner Cable’s 2009 spin-off from Time Warner Inc. Marcus has also been a constant presence on Time Warner Cable’s earnings calls.
After the spin-off, Time Warner Cable’s stock price has risen 360 percent, outperforming all the major indexes and the industry as a whole, according to the cable operators
Marcus also led the cable operator’s successful acquisitions of Adelphia, NaviSite and Insight to expand its footprint and services.
Marcus was named president and chief operating officer in 2010, and currently oversees the company’s operations, including residential services, serving more than 14.7 million customers; business services, serving more than 579,000 small, medium and enterprise sized businesses; media services, the advertising arm of TWC; and technology and network operations.
“I am honored to succeed Glenn when he retires at the end of the year,” Marcus said. Time Warner Cable is a great company, and I have tremendous respect for the commitment, intellect and inspirational vision with which Glenn has led us. Our competitively advantaged network, talented employees, robust customer base and strong tradition of innovation position us to build on the successes of Glenn's tenure.
“I look forward to leading our company into a new era of world-class products, outstanding customer service and continued growth."