KNOXVILLE, Tenn., Sep 12, 2011 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Scripps Networks Interactive Inc. (NYSE: SNI), a leading provider of lifestyle content for television and interactive media, is establishing a dedicated government affairs department with offices in Washington D.C.
The government affairs department will be under the direction of SNI Chief Legal Officer A.B. Cruz III and will represent the company's position on industry-related issues as they are considered by lawmakers and regulatory agencies. The creation of the government affairs department accelerates an ongoing process that has been evolving as Scripps Networks Interactive and its associated businesses have grown.
Scripps Networks Interactive operates a portfolio of six pay television networks, including fully-distributed brands HGTV, Food Network and Travel Channel, as well as premium-tier channels, DIY Network, Cooking Channel and Great American Country. Scripps Networks Interactive also operates category-leading Web sites associated with its television networks, including HGTV.com, FoodNetwork.com and TravelChannel.com.
The company's total revenues are on track to exceed $2 billion in 2011.
"As our industry grows in complexity, and as new digital media platforms rapidly evolve, it becomes increasingly important for an independent content creator like Scripps Networks Interactive to have a dedicated presence in Washington D.C.," said Kenneth W. Lowe, the company's chairman, president and chief executive officer. "We intend on being an active participant in conversations as lawmakers and regulators deliberate on present and emerging issues that have a direct bearing on the success of our various businesses."
As the company's chief legal officer, Cruz has been working for a number of years to raise the company's profile in Washington. The company's governmental affairs presence to date has included representation by Wiley Rein LLP, a Washington-based law firm which is recognized as having one of the nation's leading media and entertainment practices.
Cruz has been associated with Scripps media companies since 2004 when he joined The E. W. Scripps Company as senior vice president and general counsel. He has been chief legal officer and corporate secretary of Scripps Networks Interactive since it was spun out from The E.W. Scripps Company in 2008.
Before joining Scripps, Cruz was vice president, deputy general counsel and assistant secretary at BET Holdings Inc. He also practiced law as a senior associate with Wiley Rein prior to his role at BET.
"We consider it a top priority at Scripps Networks Interactive to have a meaningful seat at the table as lawmakers and regulators address the many challenges and opportunities that are affecting our company and the media industry," Cruz said. "The growing array of digital media platforms and the ever-changing habits of media consumers mandate diligence on our part as public policy on these issues is addressed and takes form."
About Scripps Networks Interactive
Scripps Networks Interactive is one of the leading developers of lifestyle-oriented content for television and the Internet, where on-air programming is complemented with online video, social media areas and e-commerce components on companion Web sites and broadband vertical channels. The company's media portfolio includes popular lifestyle television and Internet brands HGTV, Food Network, Travel Channel, DIY Network, Cooking Channel and country music network Great American Country.
SOURCE: Scripps Networks Interactive Inc.