News Corp. unveils separation details


News CorporationRupert Murdoch’s newspaper empire will continue to be named News Corp., but its television and film assets are being separated and dubbed “Fox Group.” News Corp. wants to separate into two independent, publicly traded companies at some point next year, but needs regulatory approval.

Dow Jones editor-in-chief and Wall Street Journal managing editor Robert Thomson will become the CEO of the new publishing entity. The publishing company would be the smaller of the two companies, being separated from 20th Century Fox studio and Fox’s television networks. But it would still have major brands, such as The New Wall Street Journal, NY York Post and News Corp.’s education division. Missing from that list will be The Daily, the company’s attempt at an iPad- only newspaper. News Corp. said it will stop standalone publication of “The Daily iPad” app on 12/15. It said the brand will continue to live on in other channels and some staff will be moved into positions at the Post.

Rupert Murdoch will serve as Chairman of the new News Corporation and Chairman and CEO of Fox Group. Chase Carey will serve as President and COO of Fox Group, with James Murdoch continuing in his capacity as Deputy Chief Operating Officer. Under their collective leadership, Fox Group will continue to strengthen its creative content businesses and distribution assets, including enhancing its sports portfolio through key investments in Asia, Europe and Latin America.

For publishing leadership, under Thomson, Bedi Ajay Singh will take the role of CFO; Paul Cheesbrough will retain his role as CTO; and Gerson Zweifach will serve as General Counsel of Fox Group, and for a period of one year following the separation, also of the new News Corp.

Gerard Baker, currently Deputy Editor in Chief of The Wall Street Journal, will succeed Robert Thomson as Editor in Chief of Dow Jones and Managing Editor of The Wall Street Journal, effective 1/1. Effective immediately, Jesse Angelo, the founding Editor-in-Chief of The Daily and long-time Executive Editor of The New York Post, will assume the role of Publisher of The New York Post.

Paul Carlucci, who has served as Publisher of The New York Post since 2005 will focus exclusively on his role as Chairman of News America Marketing where he continues to generate profits.

Greg Clayman, Publisher of The Daily, will oversee the company’s global digital strategy, new digital investments and distribution partnerships, working with CTO Paul Cheesbrough.

In, London Tom Mockridge, who has served as CEO of News International since July 2011, will leave at the end of the year to pursue other opportunities. He’ll be replaced by Mike Darcey, who has served as COO of BSkyB since 2006.

“This is an incredibly exciting time, for me personally, and for our companies’ ambitious futures,” said Murdoch. “The challenges we face in the publishing and media industries are great, but the opportunities are greater. Under Robert’s leadership at News Corporation, we will build on our traditional mission to inform, entertain and enhance the lives of readers and viewers around the world, and relentlessly drive global growth by promoting excellence and investing in our businesses.”

He added, “At Fox Group, what began with the acquisition of a modest film studio over 25 years ago has grown into one of the world’s most successful media companies of all times, defying conventional wisdom at every turn by pursuing excellence in creativity and innovation. Fox Group is perfectly positioned to deliver even more inspiring stories that engage audiences through film, television, sports and digital platforms, driving not only financial results but a lasting imprint on the millions of people who enjoy our various services, in every corner of the world.”

On June 28, News Corp. announced that it intends to pursue the separation of its publishing and its media and entertainment businesses into two distinct publicly traded companies.

RBR-TVBR observation: It’s a great move for the company—the phone hacking incidents need not bring down the value or confidence in the studio and television side (Fox Group), especially here in the U.S. Clearly, separate the two and Murdoch and his staff will also gain a better focus on each. The NY Post and Wall Street Journal are both strong enough to bring success to the remaining News Corp. entity as well.