CNBC is about to shakeup its lunchtime programming.Starting Monday, June 7, David Faber will host “Strategy Session” at 12 p.m., a new show we first reported on back in April, and that the network officially announced earlier this week.
“Strategy Session” will be followed by an extended half-hour version of “Fast Money Halftime Report.”
This means that the current 12 p.m. show, “Power Lunch,” is getting 60 minutes lopped off the two-hour slot it has enjoyed since Jan. 26, 1998, and that we’ll have to wait and see whether all four co-anchors—Sue Herrera, Dennis Kneale, Michelle Caruso Cabrera, and Tyler Mathisen—will hold onto their spots in the show’s new incarnation. (CNBC does not comment on employee contracts.)
We wondered if there’s been any tension between Faber and his “Power Lunch” pals over the shuffle.
“I’ve been working here for 17 years,” Faber told us in a phone interview, “and the main reason I’ve worked here so long is because I’ve always been treated with great respect by all of my colleagues. I’ve seen no change in that.”
So why the change in lineup?
Faber said it was because “there was a desire on the part of management to recalibrate that time period.” Simultaneously, he said, he had been interested in changing up his primary role as a reporter to do something more analysis-oriented.
That led to a conversation with “Strategy Session” creator Susan Krakower, CNBC’s senior vice president of strategic programing. They’ve been developing the show for about four months now, Faber said.
But we also hear CNBC created “Strategy Session” to seize on an opportunity to spotlight Faber’s co-host, contributing editor Gary Kaminsky, during its early afternoon roster. Kaminsky is the big shot former $13 billion managing director of Neuberger Berman, a valuable asset for a show focused on capital markets and investment decisions.
And there have been murmurs that Faber just signed a new contract with CNBC after being courted by Bloomberg TV and ABC news, and that “Strategy Session” may have been a part of the deal.
Faber declined to comment on his contract, but a source familiar with his situation at the network told us, “the idea [“Strategy Session”] would have been part and parcel of a deal is incorrect.”
Either way, “Strategy Session” marks Krakower’s second time dipping into “Power Lunch,” and her first big foray into CNBC’s business day programming. (She created CNBC’s early evening gold, “Fast Money” at 5 p.m. and “Mad Money” at 6 p.m.)
“Power Lunch’s” producers initially relinquished 15 minutes of airtime when Krakower’s “Fast Money Half Time Report” debuted last April from 12:45-1 p.m. They’re now losing an additional 45 minutes.
“The reason the show is controversial is because it marks a move by CNBC’s primetime czar extending her reach into daytime,” one source told us.
CNBC declined to comment.
As for Faber, “Strategy Session” will be his third anchoring stint at the network. The last show he hosted, a monthly one-hour newsmagazine called “Business Nation” that aired at 10 p.m., was short-lived, though it did win an Emmy.
We asked him what will be different this time around.
“We’ll have very high profile guests focused on the capital markets in a way I don’t think the rest of the day does,” he said. “That, taken together with spending more time on stories and adding more depth and context, the high level of our guests, Gary Kaminsky, all of it will lead to what I hope will be success.”
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