Discovery Taking Control of Hub Network, Renaming Discovery Family
Multiple media outlets have reported today that the 50-50 joint venture between Discovery Communications and Hasbro Inc., which saw Discovery Kids become The Hub in October 2010, will shift giving Discovery control and reducing Hasbro to controlled timeslots.
The Wall Street Journal reports sources close to the deal say that Hasbro will program the hours between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. while Discovery will take the rest of the channel in a more family-focused direction.
The new network, which could launch as early as the fourth quarter of this year, will be renamed Discovery Family.
Andrew Warren, Discovery’s chief financial officer, says “there are fewer and fewer channels out there where children and parents can watch together. Our objective, and our programming imperative, is to continue to think about daytime for children and nighttime for family.”
See Also – Opinion: The End of The Hub Network
The Hub Network has struggled in its nearly four years on air to compete with established brands like Nickelodeon, Disney Channel, Cartoon Network and their family of digital offshoots. While Nick and Disney average over a million total viewers each day, Hub struggles to get close to 100,000.
Hub President & CEO Margaret Loesch announced in June she was leaving the network at the end of the year. Loesch has been there since the inception in early 2010. Her departure stirred reports that a change was coming and now it has.
Henry Schleiff, who leads sister Discovery networks such as Destination America and Investigation Discovery, will lead the re-launched Discovery Family.
Hasbro’s reach at the network is expected to drop and the toy giant is reportedly talking with Turner’s Cartoon Network for airing its toy-focused content.