Bob Wilson, chief content negotiator at Cox Communications, is retiring from the company after 34 years with the company, according to a Cox press release.
Wilson was most recently in charge of negotiating multi-platform rights for content at Cox, one of the largest cable TV service providers, but when he joined Cox in 1979, it was a much smaller firm of about 45 employees in Atlanta and just 500,000 customers. Wilson started as a business manager responsible for financial planning for new franchise operations, but spent 20 years negotiating carriage agreements for cable and broadcast networks.
Wilson exits at a time when cable TV programming and distribution models are changing and broadening rapidly, and relations with broadcasters have become particularly testy at times. Wilson in the past has been vocal with criticism of how the changing programming business model is contributing to rising rates for cable TV customers.
Despite some tough negotiations over the years, Wilson said the thing he will miss most is "the relationships with programmers, peers, partners and colleagues."
- here's the Cox press release
Wilson last summer commented on the state of the programming business model
Cox last summer launched a mosaic channel with six feeds of Olympics content