28 November 2006
ITV plc ('ITV')
28 November 2006
ITV today announces that Michael Grade will join the Board of the Company in
early 2007, succeeding Sir Peter Burt, and will become Executive Chairman with
responsibility for the business of the Company from that date. John Cresswell,
the interim Chief Executive Officer, will become Chief Operating Officer and
It is the Board's intention that this arrangement should remain in place for up
to three years. Within that time, Michael Grade and the Board expect to appoint
a Chief Executive with Michael Grade stepping back from day-to-day management,
to become Non-Executive Chairman.
Sir Peter Burt said:
'Michael Grade's appointment will provide a strong and focused leadership at a
critical time in ITV's history. The Company will benefit enormously from his
unrivalled broadcasting experience. ITV's challenges, particularly on the
programming and advertising side, are considerable and Michael's particular
blend of skills will provide both the continuity of experienced media management
and the creative leadership which ITV needs to move forward rapidly. I regard
it as a real coup to have persuaded Michael to join us.
My appointment as Chairman was for three years, expiring next March and I have
decided that I would not seek re-appointment due to my increasing commitments
elsewhere. The Board believes that Michael's appointment to this position for a
specified term is entirely appropriate given all the circumstances, whilst
recognising that under the Combined Code the appointment of an Executive
Chairman is relatively unusual. It is the firm intention of the Board and
Michael Grade that the Chairmanship should return to being a non-executive
position within the three years.
Over the past three years, we have successfully completed a most complex merger
and moved into a number of new non-ITV1 businesses, including the digital
channels (ITV2, 3 and 4), SDN and Friends Reunited, which are all showing
With Michael Grade's leadership, I am confident that ITV, including ITV1, will
flourish over the coming years.'
Michael Grade said:
'It is a great privilege to have been invited by Peter and the Board to become
Chairman and to lead ITV. It has been a tough career decision to leave the BBC
but it was an opportunity I could not resist, given my family's history in the
founding of ITV and my own background at London Weekend Television.
My first priority at ITV will be to support the team in accelerating the
improvement in programming performance for our viewers and advertisers. This is
the best way to enhance the value of the Company for our shareholders.'
John Cresswell said:
'Michael joining is great news for ITV. I very much look forward to working
with Michael and being part of the team driving improvement at ITV.'
The Board feels that it is appropriate in view of these changes to suspend its
share buy-back programme at the current level of GBP251 million.
For further enquiries please contact:
Tel: 020 7843 8000
Brigitte Trafford - Communications Director
Jim Godfrey - Head of Corporate Affairs
James Tibbitts - Company Secretary
Georgina Blackburn - Head of Investor Relations
Caroline Bailey - Investor Relations Analyst
Citigate Dewe Rogerson
Tel: 020 7638 9571
Website: www.itv.com; investor information: www.itvplc.com
Michael Grade's appointment will be subject to notice of 12 months on either
side save that such notice may not expire prior to the end of 2008. The base
salary will be GBP825,000 per annum. Michael will be eligible to participate in
the ITV annual bonus on the same basis as other senior executives, and will also
receive a pension provision. A long-term share award will be made based upon
ITV performance over five years and equivalent to 150% of current salary per
annum in respect of the performance period.
Michael Grade's career in UK television started in 1973 when he joined as an
Executive at London Weekend Television. After three years in Hollywood he
joined the BBC in 1984 as Controller of BBC1, and in 1986 became Director of
Programmes, then Managing Director, Television (Designate). In 1988 he was
appointed Chief Executive of Channel 4 where he remained for nine years. After
various roles between 1997 and 2004 with Camelot plc, SMG plc, First Leisure
Corporation, The Television Corporation and other organisations, he was
appointed as Chairman of the BBC on 17 May 2004. He is a Fellow of the Royal
Television Society and Vice-President of BAFTA. He will continue as
Non-Executive Chairman of Pinewood Shepperton and Ocado.
This information is provided by RNS
The company news service from the London Stock Exchange