It has been announced that the board of directors for News Corporation has unanimously approved the plan to divide its entertainment businesses. The split will separate Fox News and Twentieth Century Fox from the publishing wing of Rupert Murdoch’s company. Murdoch will remain the chairman of both parts of the company and will also be the CEO of the entertainment business. A boss for the publishing portion of the company has yet to be named but some rumors have floated around as to who might be taking over the publishing side.
“We recognize that over the years, News Corporation’s broad collection of assets have become increasingly complex,” Murdoch said in a statement. “We determined that creating this new structure would simplify operations and greater align strategic priorities, enabling each company to better deliver on our commitments to consumers across the globe.”
The plan should take roughly a year to put in place and it is being researched with the help of JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs and Centerview. The plan is also subject to a final approval from the board of directors of News Corporation. In the entertainment side of the business, Murdoch’s successor, president and COO Chase Carey will retain the same titles he has now.
There has not been any news from James Murdoch lately who has been marred by the phone-hacking scandal at his father’s British tabloids. It has been rumored that James is not a fan of his father’s newspaper business. Murdoch’s daughter, Lachlan, has been rumored to be a candidate for the boss of the publishing side of the company but would have to return to the family she left behind.
The split for the company will separate the film, TV and satellite businesses from HarperCollins and newspapers The Wall Street Journal, New York Post, and the Sun. The split has reportedly been discussed for quite some time now. One unidentified source said the following about Murdoch, the scandal and the split, “He had to put aside his emotional attachment.” A second source said, “Everything else managed to do well, and the newspapers had become difficult and even toxic.”
In a memo, Murdoch said the following, “Our publishing businesses are greatly undervalued by the skeptics. Through this transformation we will unleash their real potential, and be able to better articulate the true value they hold for shareholders. Over the years, I have become accustomed to the noise of critics and naysayers … and pretty thick-skinned!”