Authentic Entertainment Co-Founder and CEO Lauren Lexton to Leave Studio After 18 Years
July, 17 2018—Authentic Entertainment Co-Founder and CEO Lauren Lexton, a ground-breaking and Emmy Award-winning reality TV and documentary producer, is set to leave the production company she co-founded 18 years ago.
Authentic’s former head of development, Helga Eike, will take over for Lexton, returning as its new President. Eike, who most recently launched Red Bandit Media with ITV America, previously spent 10 years at Authentic Entertainment as Senior Vice President, Development.
Lexton has overseen the creation and production of hit shows such as “Ace of Cakes,” “Knife Fight,” “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo,” “Flipping Out!,” “Best Thing I Ever Ate,” “Toddlers & Tiaras” and this year’s successful return of “Trading Spaces” for TLC. Authentic Entertainment is a division of Endemol Shine North America.
“Lauren has developed and produced some of the most iconic unscripted series of the last two decades and helped build Authentic Entertainment into one of the leading production companies in our industry,” says Endemol Shine North America CEO Cris Abrego. “We are all truly thankful for her many contributions.”
Abrego added, “And while we say a fond farewell to Lauren, we are happy to welcome Helga back to the studio that she helped lead to tremendous success, developing many of Authentic’s top series during her previous tenure.”
“Helga helped build Authentic, so it’s perfect that she will now run it. She’s one of the smartest people I know and I’m excited to see her take Authentic to new heights. I can’t imagine a better story to tell than this one,” says Lauren Lexton. “I’m also thrilled that Authentic will continue to be a female-led company.”
Added Eike, “Authentic was my first home. I love the brand and I am beyond thrilled to return to the fold. Lauren has been a mentor to me and I am honored to take over the leadership role she has shined in over the last 18 years. Authentic is one of the originals, a production company that has withstood the test of time, and I couldn’t be more excited to continue and guide it into its third decade.”
Over the course of Authentic Entertainment’s history, Lexton has worked on thousands of hours of programming that spans more than 80 shows for more than 20 different networks. Lexton co-founded Authentic Entertainment in 2000 with Tom Rogan. In August 2015, Lexton was named sole CEO of Authentic, as Rogan left the company after 15 years. Lexton and Rogan sold Authentic Entertainment to Endemol (now Endemol Shine) in 2010.
In 2016, Eike left Authentic to launch Red Bandit Media, producing two seasons of “Texas Cake House” for Food Network, “I Should have Known” for TLC and numerous projects in development at top networks including Discovery, HGTV, Food, Travel, OWN and Lifetime, in its first two years.
Eike has developed programming for nearly every major U.S. cable network. Prior to joining Authentic and starting Red Bandit, she spent seven years as a free-lance producer, director and writer in unscripted television in both NY and LA.
About Authentic Entertainment
Authentic Entertainment is an Emmy Award-winning production company that produces some of cable TV’s most popular shows and has brought its creative vision to the Discovery Channel, Food Network, TLC, History Channel, FYI, National Geographic, Showtime, Travel Channel, Animal Planet, Bravo, Sundance Channel, and WEtv. In 2010, Authentic joined Endemol Shine Group, a worldwide leader in multi-platform entertainment programming.
ABOUT ENDEMOL SHINE NORTH AMERICA
Endemol Shine North America delivers world-class content and compelling storytelling to multiple platforms in the U.S. and across the globe. Endemol Shine North America is part of Endemol Shine Group, the global content creator, producer and distributor with a diverse portfolio of companies that are behind some of the most prominent hit television formats and series in the world.
Its Endemol Shine Latino division oversees all Spanish and Portuguese-language operations across Latin America, including newly launched studio Endemol Shine Boomdog, which produces original content for both the U.S. Hispanic and Mexican markets. Subsidiary production companies include Authentic Entertainment, Truly Original, and 51 Minds Entertainment.
Endemol Shine Group’s companies in North America are behind such hit series as Big Brother (CBS), Ink Master (Paramount Network), MasterChef (FOX), MasterChef Junior (FOX), Below Deck (Bravo) Swamp People (History), The Real Housewives of Atlanta (Bravo), T.I. & Tiny: The Family Hustle (VH1), Page Six TV (Syndicated), Fear Factor (MTV), Best.Cover.Ever. (YouTube), I'm Dying Up Here (Showtime), Trading Spaces (TLC), as well as, upcoming Deal or No Deal (CNBC), Family Food Fight (ABC) and Utopia (Amazon).