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Shepard Smith's CNBC Show Abruptly Canceled

Courtesy CNBC

The out journalist, who departed Fox News in 2020, is the victim of a "strategic realignment" at the finance-focused news network.

(CNN) -- Shepard Smith will exit CNBC later this year after the business-focused news network announced on Thursday that it will cancel his show as it undergoes a "strategic realignment" under new leadership.

The end of "The News with Shepard Smith," which will air its final episode later this month, comes a little more than two years after CNBC launched the show with high hopes that a straight, down-the-middle news program would resonate with its audience.

"'The News' set out on a bold mission of providing non-partisan, fact-based reporting on the most important stories of the day in the U.S. and around the world," CNBC President KC Sullivan wrote in a memo to employees Thursday. "The quality journalism Shep and his team delivered each weeknight was exemplary and not lost on us or our 7 p.m. audience."

The cancellation of Smith's 7 p.m. program is the first major move that Sullivan has made since taking over as CNBC president in September from longtime network chief Mark Hoffman.

Sullivan indicated to employees that he wanted to invest more resources in financial news and said that Smith's show will be replaced in early 2023 with a business-focused program.

"After spending time with many of you and closely reviewing the various aspects of our business, I believe we must prioritize and focus on our core strengths of business news and personal finance," Sullivan wrote in his memo.

Sullivan acknowledged, however, that the "strategic realignment" will result in "some difficult decisions."

"Change is difficult, particularly when talented, good people are impacted," he wrote.

Smith's show was staffed with about 20 people. Sullivan said CNBC "will work across the News Group to identify other potential opportunities" for them.

Smith was hired by Hoffman after leaving the right-wing channel Fox News over disagreements with its editorial decisions in recent years.

At the time of his hire, Smith said Hoffman had presented him with "CNBC's vision for a fact-based, hour-long evening news program with the mission to cut through the static to deliver facts, in context and with perspective."

(tm) & (c) 2022 Cable News Network, Inc., a Warner Bros. Discovery Company. All rights reserved.

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