Nov 29 (Reuters) - AMC Networks' Christina
Spade abruptly stepped down as chief executive officer on
Tuesday, less than three months after taking over the role,
sending the company's shares down 5%.
The operator of cable channels and video streaming services
said in a regulatory filing that Spade was terminated "without
'cause' or resignation for 'good reason' basis," and that she
would receive "severance benefits payable in accordance with the
terms of her employment agreement".
"We thank Christina for her contributions to the company in
her CEO role and her earlier CFO (chief financial officer) role,
and we wish her well in her future endeavors," Chairman James
Dolan said in a brief statement.
The company declined to comment further on the departure. It
said the board was in the process of finding a successor.
Spade joined AMC Networks as CFO in 2021 after serving as
the finance chief of ViacomCBS, now known as Paramount Global
. In September, she took the mantle of CEO from Matt
Blank who had held it on an interim basis since long-time boss
Josh Sapan stepped down in August last year.
Cord cutting and a gloomy advertising market have weighed on
the company's business this year, pushing AMC Networks' shares
down 40% in 2022.
The streaming unit has, however, emerged as a bright spot,
with its revenue rising 41% in the last reported quarter,
although the company's overall revenue fell 16%.
"We expect this news to pressure shares unless and until the
company finds new leadership and can reassure investors that
Spade's exit was not related to any financial-related issues,"
Cowen analysts said in a note.
(Reporting by Eva Mathews in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil