|WARNER MEDIA, LLC filed this Form 425 on 11/02/2016|
Jeff Bewkes Third Quarter Employee Interview (Transcript)
November 2, 2016
Poppy Harlow: Hey, everyone. Good morning. I'm Poppy Harlow with CNN. With us is Time Warner Chairman and CEO, Jeff Bewkes. Good morning.
Jeff Bewkes : Good Morning Poppy.
Poppy Harlow: Earnings morning. Busy morning for you guys. This morning Time Warner announced third quarter earnings and this comes less than 10 days after the announcement that the Company is being acquired by AT&T. So let's tick through the numbers first and then we'll get to AT&T and that deal in a moment. $7.2 billion in revenue. That's up 9% from a year ago. That's ahead of the street's expectations. $2.1 billion in adjusted operating income. Revenue and adjusted operating income growth at each of our divisions – so Turner, HBO, Warner Bros. and double digit earnings growth across the board. What's driving it?
Jeff Bewkes: It's basically creative excellence across the Company. So if you start with HBO think of the new premieres of Westworld. The Emmys just finished. HBO had more Emmys than any other network for the 15th year in a row. CNN, here we are. Fantastic year at CNN. Right now we are in the season of the election and CNN is doing the best coverage of anyone and whether it is on TV or mobile people are flocking to CNN to get the latest news.
We've got some of the best news shows on cable TV dial at TBS, TNT, we shouldn't forget Adult Swim, which is on a big roll right now. If you go to Warner Bros. we've got at Warner 30 plus shows on broadcast networks and another 30 plus on cable and other kinds of outlets. So the TV side of Warners is, you know, everybody that's watching this is probably watching a number of Warner shows and then go to films. We had Suicide Squad was one of the biggest films of the summer. And right now Sully is the number one film of the fall and if you haven't seen it you ought to go out and watch that movie. It is actually an inspiration.
Poppy Harlow: Yea, I can't wait to see it. I know you value creative independence across the Company. Talk to us about what the AT&T deal will mean for our independence as journalists – if anything will change.
Jeff Bewkes: No. What we need to succeed – we have always built our Company on this – its independence for journalism. Independence for creative voices and authenticity. That's how we attract journalists like you to come and work. That's how we attract audiences because they trust that what we're doing is our best shot at objectivity and depth. And, Randall and the team at AT&T know that very well. They don't want to take the world's leading creator of cutting-edge news stories, leading creator of whether it's films, TV shows, whatever it is and a lot of our partners that come from outside our Company they come to us because they trust our ability to amplify their stories, you know, bring all the platform capabilities that we have.
Poppy Harlow: So the deal with AT&T isn't expected to close for about a year. We've got a ways to go. Until then, as things progress, where can employees inside the Company go to learn more about where things stand and what's happening?
Jeff Bewkes: Well, go to MyTW. We're going to have ongoing updates there. All of us, not just me, but everybody at every level in the Company, we're going to try to keep communicating and figuring out is there anything that's a question we need to answer, we haven't answered yet. The basic answer is, we're going to keep doing what we're doing. We're just going to do it with a little more resources and more ability to innovate, more ability to support the kinds of risks that we take, and I think this will just get better.
Poppy Harlow: What are you doing on November 8th?
Jeff Bewkes: Well, I'll be voting and I think everybody ought to go out and vote however you're going to vote.
Poppy Harlow: And I think they'll be watching CNN.
Jeff Bewkes: Yea, I think you should watch CNN to get the truth.
Poppy Harlow: Thank you.
Jeff Bewkes: Alright. Thanks, Poppy.
Poppy Harlow: Congrats on the numbers.
Jeff Bewkes: Thank you.