If you’ve been sitting up nights worried that former News Corp. COO Peter Chernin was unemployed, this should put your mind at ease. Both the New York Times and Los Angeles Times report that he has found a new position, if only as a temp.
Both newspapers quote unnamed sources as saying Chernin has signed on to consult Comcast as it negotiates to acquire a majority stake of NBC Universal. In fact, he’s said to have been a paid consultant to Comcast for several months.
But while Chernin, who stepped down voluntarily as COO of News Corp. earlier this year, is an obvious choice to head a large media company, both reports say he will not stay on once a Comcast deal with GE on NBCU is completed. And the NY Times report says Jeff Zucker got the word Monday from Comcast that he would definitely be kept on to continue to run NBCU.
Chernin is said not to be involved in the financial negotiations, but rather in helping Comcast evaluate what it would be able to do with the NBCU content businesses.
Meanwhile, the LA Times says Chernin is not the only former News Corp. exec. Working as a consultant to Comcast. Former Fox Broadcasting Chairman of Entertainment Peter Liguori, who left the company in March, is reported to be advising Comcast on the value of the NBC assets. Unlike Chernin, the LA Times says Liguori is likely to stay on with Comcast as part of the management team if the bid for NBCU is successful.