BALTIMORE (WJZ/AP) — Discovery Communications has announced plans to relocate its global headquarters from Silver Spring to New York City.
The company that owns and operates the Discovery Channel is reportedly leaving its One Discovery Place building in the second half of 2019. Discovery opened its Montgomery County headquarters in 2003.
David Zaslav, Discovery’s president and chief executive officer, told employees the decision was prompted by rapid changes in the media industry. He said many of the company’s advertising partners, investors, analysts and content partners are based in New York.
Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan said he has had ongoing discussions with the company but was told it didn’t matter what incentives the state could offer because nothing would change the decision to move to New York.
Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett said in a statement Tuesday that he was “disappointed” with Discovery’s decision to head out of the area.
“Certainly these are challenging times in the communications industry and the recent Scripps merger involving Discovery undoubtedly had a significant impact.
“Notwithstanding these changes in objective conditions, Montgomery County has been in discussions with Discovery in the past months since the merger in an effort to respond to the challenges faced by an independent television, entertainment, and education channel in a radically-changing industry. The County and State made a substantial proposal designed to accommodate Discovery’s challenges. Together, we were ready to provide considerable incentives to retain their presence in the County.
“I know this was a tough decision for Discovery. I respect the contributions Discovery has made over the last 15 years to Silver Spring and Montgomery County. We will miss them.”
The company employs about 1,300 full-time employees in the state.
Discovery recently purchased Scripps Networks, which owns HGTV and Food Network. The company’s current TV channels include TLC, Science, Animal Planet, Investigation Discovery and Oprah Winfrey Network.
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