‘I Had An Inappropriate Relationship’: NBC Universal CEO Steps Down After Investigation

Photo by Jeff Fusco/Getty Images for Comcast

James Lynch Investigative Reporter
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NBC Universal CEO Jeff Shell is leaving his position effective immediately following an investigation into a complaint of inappropriate conduct, parent company Comcast announced Sunday.

Shell had overseen NBC Universal’s news and entertainment portfolio, sports production, theme parks and streaming operation. He worked at the company in various executive roles for nearly two decades. (RELATED: NBC Retracts Story About Migrant Minor Who Turned Out To Be An Adult)

“Today is my last day as CEO of NBCUniversal. I had an inappropriate relationship with a woman in the company, which I deeply regret,” Shell said in a statement. “I’m truly sorry I let my Comcast and NBCUniversal colleagues down, they are the most talented people in the business and the opportunity to work with them the last 19 years has been a privilege.”

Comcast opened an investigation into Shell soon after an employee filed a complaint against Shell, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter. His senior team will report to Comcast President Mike Cavanagh and no replacement has been named.

“We are disappointed to share this news with you. We built this company on a culture of integrity. Nothing is more important than how we treat each other. You should count on your leaders to create a safe and respectful workplace. When our principles and policies are violated, we will always move quickly to take appropriate action, as we have done here,” Cavanagh and Comcast CEO Brian Roberts said in a statement, per CNBC.

Shell was named NBC Universal CEO in January 2020 and guided the company through the COVID-19 pandemic. Under his leadership, NBC launched its streaming platform Peacock and conducted layoffs to reorient the business towards streaming, CNBC reported.

James Lynch

James Lynch can be reached on Twitter @jameslynch32