Ousted Time Inc. Chief Claims Time Warner 'Documented' Its Acclaim For Him

In what looks to be a fairly contentious parting of the ways, ousted Time Inc. chief Jack Griffin Friday released a statement indicating that Time Warner may not have had grounds for dismissing him. The statement alluded that Time Warner management had "documented" its acclaim for his management of the publishing division, but did not elaborate or indicate whether Griffin planned to challenge his dismissal in some way.

Nor did Griffin give his own reasons for the ouster, but stated:

"I was recruited and hired by Time Warner to lead the business transformation of Time Inc., based on my clear record of success and results in the industry. This continued at Time Inc., with the consistent and documented acclaim of Time Warner's senior management. Every action I took over the past six months was made with that ultimate goal in mind. My exit was clearly not about management style or results. I leave behind a first rate team and wish them all the best of success."

Last week, Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes announced that Griffin was being dismissed after only six months as president of Time Inc., because his management style did not "mesh" with Time Warner's.

Griffin, who had previously been head of the media division of Meredith Corp., is known to be a hard-charging executive who no doubt ruffled feathers inside the often genteel Time Warner culture.

Bewkes said a permanent successor would eventually be named, and said that an interim management committee composed of a trio of Time Inc. executives -- CFO Howard Averill, General Counsel Maurice Edelson and Editor in Chief John Huey -- would run the organization in the meantime, reporting directly to Bewkes.

Griffin joined Time Inc. as CEO in August 2010, succeeding long-time Time Inc. executive Ann Moore, who retired.

Among Griffin's first acts as CEO was to create Time Inc.'s first ever Chief Digital Officer position, and naming former Interactive Advertising Bureau President-CEO Randall Rothenberg to the post. On Friday, Mediaweek published an article citing unnamed sources that the IAB was considering offering Rothenberg his old job.

Meanwhile, Griffin's official Time Warner management bio is still up on Time Warner's site, and is full of corporate acclaim.

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