HR & Management

21st Century Fox CEO Rupert Murdoch stands down to make way for sons

3 min read

18 June 2015

Former deputy editor

Rupert Murdoch, the founder, chairman and CEO of global film and TV business 21st Century Fox, will stand down from his chief executive officer role to make way for his son James Murdoch.

The company, whose film credits include Speed, Die Hard, Fight Club, as well as the X-Men and Planet of the Apes franchises, will have the changes made to the senior executive team effective from 1 July.

James is currently the co-COO but has held multiple positions during his 20 years of working for the company. His present role has seen him responsible for the firm’s broadcasting networks, which serve 1.8 billion subscribers each day. 

Previously he has worked as the CEO at BskyB – 21st Century owns 39.1 per cent of the business – from 2003 to 2007 and then as chairman until 2012, supporting the firm’s growth to over ten million customers.

It’s not just James who will be promoted, however. His brother Lachlan Murdoch, the current co-chairman of 21st Century Fox, will be made an executive co-chairman alongside their father Rupert.  

The transfer of power will result in all corporate, film and TV operations running through the brothers.

The brothers, said: “We are both humbled by the opportunity to lead, with our father and the talented team of executives at 21st Century Fox, this extraordinary company. We are also grateful to the board for providing us the opportunity to lead this great company.

“Most importantly, we each look forward to working with the entire team of creators, executives, artists and all of our colleagues that make up our global businesses, to steer

the company into the future, and to drive continued value for our shareholders.”

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Meanwhile, Chase Carey, deputy chairman, president and COO since 2009, will become executive vice chairman until 30 June 2016. 

His extended stay is designed to support the Murdoch brothers in scaling the business during the change. The firm reported Q3 financials of $6.8 billion, which was down $1.4 billion from $8.2 billion year-on-year.

Rupert Murdoch, said: “It has always been our priority to ensure stable, long term leadership for the company, and these appointments achieve that goal. Lachlan and James are each talented and accomplished executives and together, we, as shareholders and partners, will strive to take our company to new levels of growth and opportunity at a time of dynamic change in our industry.

“I can’t thank Chase Carey enough for his friendship, counsel and leadership over the past decades. He will be actively engaged in supporting Lachlan and James as they step in to their new roles.”