(Bloomberg) -- Apple Inc.’s top executive in charge of its video and sports businesses is departing, according to people familiar with the matter, reshuffling a services division that has fueled much of the company’s growth in recent years.
The executive, Pete Distad, plans to leave Apple this month, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the move hasn’t been announced. He was hired in 2013 from the Hulu streaming service, now part of Walt Disney Co., where he ran marketing and distribution.
In his current role, Distad oversees the business and operations side of the Apple TV app and the TV+ streaming service, leading the company’s ambitious push into television shows, Hollywood movies and sporting events. His division negotiated deals with Major League Soccer and Major League Baseball and turned the Apple TV set-top box into a hub for video content — both from inside and outside the company.
The move is at least the third major exit from Apple’s services organization, following the departures earlier this year of vice presidents Peter Stern and Michael Abbott. Stern ran many of Apple’s services businesses and was formerly Distad’s boss. Abbott, meanwhile, oversaw Apple’s cloud services group. General Motors Co. announced Tuesday that Abbott is joining the carmaker to work on in-vehicle software.
An Apple spokesman declined to comment on the departures.
Distad, a senior director at Apple, reports to Oliver Schusser, whose boss is services chief Eddy Cue. Before his latest job, Distad was a company vice president in charge of marketing for the Apple TV set-top box.
Apple will be elevating sports content executive Jim DeLorenzo to replace Distad on the sports side, and it’s now seeking a replacement for the TV business duties. The content arm of Apple TV+ is run by worldwide video heads Jamie Erlicht and Zack Van Amburg. They remain in their roles, reporting to Cue.
Read More: Apple’s New Challenge: A Wave of Key Executives Leaving
Services have quickly become a core part of Apple’s overall business, and the company cited it as a bright spot during its quarterly report last week. The segment climbed 5.5% in the period, generating nearly $21 billion, while other areas — like the Mac and iPad — suffered declines.
Apple has boosted services revenue in part by selling bundles of different offerings at a reduced price. It’s also offered promotions for new device buyers and users of certain wireless carriers, and the company has been pushing sign-ups of services via notifications to iPhone and iPad users.
Distad has been responsible for striking streaming distribution deals and for getting customers to pay Apple to view content. Though Apple TV+ isn’t seen as a major moneymaker, it has elevated the company’s image in the media world. Apple won a best picture Oscar last year for the TV+ movie CODA, and its show “Ted Lasso” is a streaming hit.
Still, the platform trails Netflix, Max, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video and Paramount+ in market share, and it’s unclear if Apple wants to spend the kind of eye-popping figures on content that its peers have to win viewers.
©2023 Bloomberg L.P.