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Update: Playboy Consolidates Online, Cable and Home Video Units

18 Oct, 2004 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Citing a business infrastructure scattered between Chicago, New York and Los Angeles, Playboy Enterprises has streamlined its online, home video and cable operations into a new Playboy Entertainment Group, headquartered in L.A.

Following the separate departure of Barry Leshtz, SVP and GM of home video, last week's consolidation of the three business units resulted in layoffs of 20 staffers, primarily in marketing, sales and administrative support in online and home video, according to spokesperson Scott Barton.

“The majority of [layoffs] were in the Chicago and New York offices, and the [continuing personnel] will be moving to L.A.,” Barton said.

VP Jeff Jenest and marketing director Teri Thomas have been assigned undetermined positions in the new company, according to sources.

James Griffiths, former senior EVP of Playboy Enterprises Interactive, becomes president of PEG, with Ned Nalle, president of programming, including home video, and Randy Nicolau, president of distribution, reporting to him in Los Angeles.

“The similarities of these businesses, combined with the evolution of digital distribution platforms, have created an opportunity to create a more efficient and cost-effective operating structure,” Griffiths said.

PEG currently employs about 200 people, excluding Playboy magazine, which continues to be published in Chicago and was not affected by the consolidation.

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