Joe Uva, NBCU's chairman of Hispanic enterprises and content, told staff this morning that Emilio Romano will be leaving the group, where he headed Spanish-language broadcaster Telemundo and cable network Mun2. "I want to personally thank Emilio for his contributions to Telemundo Media," Uva said. "His focus on positioning Telemundo to take share from Univision, and mun2 to better resonate with the rapidly growing Millennial population has established a foundation for growth."
Romano's departure is effective immediately.
"A formal search," according to Uva, will begin immediately, with Uva heading down to Hialeah, Florida where the network is located to manage the day-to-day of the two networks in Romano's absence. "In the coming days I will reach out to each division to touch base directly."
Romano, a veteran of the Hispanic TV world, ran the mergers and acquisitions division at Grupo Television, the TV production juggernaut that in many ways formed the basis for Univision's massive market share. His arrival in 2011 at Telemundo, Univision's direct competitor, was seen as a coup for the network; Romano reported to Lauren Zalaznick, then-head of a large division at NBCU that oversaw both digital and Hispanic content.
Zalaznick, however, is leaving the company, and she hasn't overseen the Hispanic networks in months. Uva was promoted to leadership of the Hispanic group in April, and now it's anyone's guess as to who Uva's pick to assume Romano's duties will be. The U.S. Hispanic TV world is small, and NBCU and Univision have many of the major players sewn up, including Cesar Conde, who made the leap from Univision to NBCU corporate, where he works on business development.
The exec will be difficult to replace; his tenure at Telemundo was marked by large changes to the network's strategy and lineup from the era of his predecessor, Don Browne, and it remains to be seen how the network will fare with three leaders in as few as four years.