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European TV giant RTL Group on Wednesday named co-CEOs for its RTL Deutschland unit in Germany.
Matthias Dang and Stephan Schäfer will take over the leadership after the previously unveiled decision to combine RTL Deutschland and publishing giant Gruner + Jahr as of the start of 2022. Bernd Reichart, previously CEO of RTL Deutschland, will leave the company “to take on new management responsibilities within the Bertelsmann Group,” RTL’s parent company.
Schäfer will continue to be responsible for RTL Deutschland’s content and brands, including its “entire journalistic offering,” and will also remain CEO of Gruner + Jahr (G+J). Dang will continue to lead all commercial, technological and digital activities of the company and also remain CEO of German advertising sales house Ad Alliance.
Oliver Radtke, managing director of G+J, will additionally become a member of the management board of RTL Deutschland. “In this role, he will be responsible for the overall coordination of the combination of RTL Deutschland and G+J,” the company said.
Julia Reuter, managing director strategy, human resources & culture, and Alexander Glatz, managing director legal & finance, will remain members of the RTL Deutschland management board.
“By combining RTL Deutschland and Gruner + Jahr, we are creating Germany’s first cross-media champion and making a clear commitment towards long-term growth and greater investment in quality content, diversity and pluralism of opinion,” said Thomas Rabe, CEO of RTL Group. “For this important task, we have created a new leadership structure. With Stephan Schäfer and Matthias Dang, the company will be led by two co-CEOs who know and complement each other well, combining programming competence with journalistic and commercial expertise, strategic foresight and leadership strength.”
In a joint statement, Schäfer and Dang said: “We look forward to our new role with both joy and respect. RTL Deutschland has set itself many goals, including the positioning of RTL as a leading entertainment brand that stands for independent journalism, attitude and inspiration. To achieve this, we want to expand our family of channels in Germany around RTL and Vox, alongside further accelerating the growth of our streaming service RTL+.”
They added: “From January onwards, we will also have the opportunity and the mission to build Gruner + Jahr’s journalistic expertise and brands into something new – the first media company that is a leader in all genres, attractive to creatives and audiences alike.”
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