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Warner Bros. Discovery Lays Off 70 Staffers from Turner Sports, Bleacher Report

The Warner Bros. Discovery Sports division lost over 10 percent of its workforce.

HOBE SOUND, FLORIDA - MAY 24: Tiger Woods looks on  during The Match: Champions For Charity at Medalist Golf Club on May 24, 2020 in Hobe Sound, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images for The Match)

Among Warner Bros. Sports’ key properties is the recurring golf tournament titled “The Match”

Getty Images for The Match

Around 70 staff members of Warner Bros. Discovery’s sports division have been laid off, IndieWire has confirmed. The WBD Sports Chair and CEO Luis Silberwasser announced the news to his staff via an email Tuesday afternoon.

“Today we communicated difficult staffing decisions that affect team members within our sports organization, and it has been an emotional and challenging day for everyone,” Silberwasser wrote in the email. “Our reality is we must evolve to position WBD and our Sports division for long-term success against an environment that includes a challenging macroeconomic forecast, as well as headwinds from the accelerated changes in our media industry and business model. Today’s actions are necessary as we transform and evolve our business, as we remain focused on delivering best-in-class product, talent and digital experiences for our fans.”

The majority of those laid off worked for the division’s Turner Sports and Bleacher Report brands, although a few employees of the company’s studio in Atlanta were also let go. Turner Sports handles broadcasts for major sports leagues such as the NBA and NHL, while the Bleacher Report is a website and video series focused on sports culture. Warner Bros. Discovery cut over 10% of its workforce through the layoffs, including open positions that will remain unfilled.

Sports is the most recent Warner Bros. Discovery division to be affected by the budget cuts and layoffs that have occurred at the company since it formed via merger this April. As WBD head David Zaslav continues his mission to cut the company’s spending by $3 billion, 125 jobs have been eliminated from the company’s unscripted, scripted, and animated television departments.

As fears of a recession loom, many entertainment companies have taken initiative through major layoffs, including Criterion Channel and Nexstar. The Walt Disney Company is also expected to begin layoffs and a targeted hiring freeze imminently.

Read Silberwasser’s full memo below.

Dear WBD Sports colleagues,

Today we communicated difficult staffing decisions that affect team members within our sports organization, and it has been an emotional and challenging day for everyone. We empathize with those impacted and are appreciative of these colleagues and friends who have contributed to our growth and success.

Our reality is we must evolve to position WBD and our Sports division for long-term success against an environment that includes a challenging macroeconomic forecast, as well as headwinds from the accelerated changes in our media industry and business model. Today’s actions are necessary as we transform and evolve our business, as we remain focused on delivering best-in-class product, talent and digital experiences for our fans.

Last week during the Global Town Hall I shared our key priorities and the many reasons I feel optimistic about WBD Sports’ growth. Above all, I know it is our shared commitment to quality and excellence that drives our success. I’ve seen that creative passion and unwavering spirit, along with the resilience, in all of you. I know we will get through this challenging time by supporting those affected and coming together as a community.

I’d like to thank our friends and colleagues who have been impacted for their valuable contributions to WBD Sports and wish them well in their future pursuits.

Luis

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