boss Crozier to quit after seven years at the
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[May 03, 2017]
By Paul Sandle
LONDON (Reuters) - ITV boss
Adam Crozier, who has restored the British broadcaster's
fortunes by reducing its reliance on advertising and
expanding its production business, will step down next
month after seven years in charge, the company said on
Finance Director Ian Griffiths will take on additional
responsibilities as chief operating officer and will lead the
group until a successor is found, ITV said, helped by Chairman
Peter Bazalgette, who will become executive chairman in the
Crozier, who has grown ITV's production operations by buying
independent producers in Britain and overseas, will leave at the
end of June.
Having spent 21 years as a chief executive across four varied
industries, the 53-year-old Crozier said it was the right time
to move to the next stage of his career and to build a
"portfolio of roles".
"Today ITV is more robust, well balanced and stronger both
creatively and financially than ever before, and is well placed
for the digital future," Crozier said.
Although Crozier's departure was not a surprise, some analysts
questioned why the company had not managed to line up a
successor and also underlined the challenges facing the next
boss of Britain's main commercial TV company.
"Consumption habits are changing at pace and the shift towards
streaming media and even towards non-traditional media such as
video game streams leaves ITV vulnerable," said Neil Campling,
global head of TMT research at Northern Trust Capital Markets.
Shares in ITV slipped 0.2 percent to 211 pence on Wednesday
ITV said the company's revenue from sources other than
advertising had more than doubled to almost 1.9 billion pounds
($2.5 billion) in 2016, more than half of its total, under
The broadcaster, which makes soap opera Coronation Street, has
long been viewed as a takeover target in an industry that is
consolidating as viewers increasingly watch content on demand
and on different platforms.
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Speculation has centered on U.S media group Liberty Global, which
owns 9.9 percent of the broadcaster, although it has previously said
it did not want to buy the group.
Citi analysts said ITV had often been talked about as a takeover
target, but the market was likely to take Crozier's departure as a
sign that no potential takeover was imminent.
ITV last year dropped plans to try to buy Canada's Entertainment
One, the owner of children's TV character Peppa Pig.
Crozier, who was paid 3.4 million pound last year according to ITV's
annual report, started his executive career at advertising group
Saatchi & Saatchi in the 1990s, before moving to The Football
Association and postal service Royal Mail Group.
He joined ITV when the ad market was at a low point and he initiated
a restructuring that diversified the business into international
production and cut the cost base.
It bought a majority stake in World Productions, the maker of hit
BBC drama "Line of Duty", on Tuesday, increasing its productions
capabilities in scripted drama.
Crozier added another non-executive role to his portfolio last month
when he joined the board of Costa Coffee to Premier Inn group
(Editing by Kate Holton and Keith Weir)
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