NBC Layoffs Hit Marketing and Publicity Departments

6:40 PM PST 02/10/2012 by Lacey Rose
NBC's Smash

Somewhere in the neighborhood of 10 marketing employees were let go Friday, with publicity layoffs expected next week.

The pink slips are being doled out across NBC’s marketing and publicity ranks.

The news of structural changes comes as entertainment chairman Bob Greenblatt continues to populate the ratings-challenged network with former Showtime colleagues, from marketing chief Len Fogge to publicity honcho Richard Licata. In doing so, Greenblatt has brought a cable mentality to the promotion of his fare, as evidenced by the lavish campaign for Monday’s musical drama Smash and reality break-out The Voice.

Among those exiting: 26-year veteran Jim Vescera, the network’s executive vp and creative director of marketing, who opted to step down Friday. Somewhere in the neighborhood of nine others in the marketing department were let go, sources tell The Hollywood Reporter.

The ax is yet to fall within Licata’s publicity department, though reports have pegged the looming departures at eight team members. Such actions are likely to come next week, say sources.

According to a report in the New York Post, the layoffs will affect roughly 2 percent of the entertainment division’s staff in total, though a well-placed source suggests it will be less than that. NBC declined to comment.

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