Peter Liguori leaves Tribune, linked to Sony

Veteran TV exec Peter Liguori has left US station group Tribune after four years at the helm.

Peter LiguoriLiguori, a former entertainment chief at Fox, FX channel chief and COO at Discovery, has been president and CEO at Tribune since start-2013. There is speculation in the US that he could succeed Michael Lynton and run Sony Pictures’ Hollywood business.

Liguori’s exit from Tribune was officially announced today. The company said he had decided to step down and is expected to exit in March and it is scouting for a replacement. Peter M. Kern, who is on the Tribune board, will be the interim CEO.

The biggest deal on Liguori’s watch at Tribune was the US$2.7 billion acquisition of the Local TV station group.

“Following the successful completion of several financial, strategic and creative initiatives, culminating in the pending sale of Gracenote, Tribune Media is well advanced in its transformation to a more focused broadcast and cable networks company,” said Liguori.

“I believe that now is the ideal time for a new leader to steer today’s Tribune. As curious and excited as I am about pursuing new opportunities, I am equally grateful for the achievements, commitment and integrity of this company’s management team and its dedicated employees.”

Bruce Karsh, chairman of Tribune Media’s board of directors added: “We greatly appreciate Peter’s leadership in the transformation of Tribune Media over the last four years, including the efforts to monetize non-core assets and simplify the company.  It became clear to Peter and the board that in this last year of his contract it was time to find a new CEO to run the more broadcast-centric company.”