21 March 2017
| James Pearce
Comcast Cable has promoted COO Dave Watson to the role of CEO, replacing Neil Smit, who becomes vice chairman of the Comcast group.
Watson will become CEO of Comcast Cable from 1 April,
initially working with Smit during a leadership transition
period. Smit will then take up his new part-time role, which
will see him look at future technology-oriented business
Watson has been with the US cable company for more than 25
years, holding a number of senior roles across product, sales,
marketing and advertising. He has been COO of Comcast Cable
"Dave Watson is the perfect new leader of Comcast Cable,"
said Brian Roberts, chairman and CEO of Comcast Corporation.
"There are few people in the cable industry who have his
breadth and depth of experience.
"Dave, along with Neil and the executive teams across the
cable division, drove the operating strategy and execution that
have led to phenomenal growth over the last several years as
well as our focus on the customer experience and the
improvements we have made recently. Dave knows the
business and has a track record of delivering results."
During his time as COO, Watson worked closely with Smit on a
number of projects. Smit has been at Comcast since 2010, when
he joined form cable rival Charter Communications. He has also
held roles at AOL and Nabisco, and served as a Navy SEAL.
Smit said: "Leading Comcast Cable has been a wonderful
experience. Brian has been a terrific partner and I have
the utmost respect and admiration for his vision, leadership,
and drive. It has been an honor and privilege leading this
team. I know I am leaving Comcast Cable in great hands
with Dave Watson as its new leader.
"As I approach 60, and for reasons related to the injuries I
sustained in my previous career, I am looking forward to
spending more time with my family while also helping Comcast
find new growth opportunities."