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BSkyB’s Darcey to take Mockridge’s role in News Corp split

Mike Darcey is to leave BSkyB to take Tom Mockridge’s role as CEO of News International as part of the restructuring of News Corp into two companies looking after publishing and media and entertainment respectively.

News Corp has also confirmed that Robert Thomson, the managing editor of the Wall Street Journal, will become the CEO of the new publishing entity, to be called News Corp, while Rupert Murdoch will serve as chairman and CEO of Fox Group, the umbrella group for film and TV activities, and chairman of News Corp. Chase Carey will serve as president and chief operating officer of Fox Group, while James Murdoch will continue as deputy chief operating officer.

Darcey has been chief operating officer at BSkyB since 2006. “I’m delighted that Mike Darcey has agreed to take the reins as News International’s new CEO,” said Rupert Murdoch.  “Mike is a world-class executive with unprecedented strategic and commercial experience and I look forward to benefiting from his many talents.  His broadcasting background will provide important leadership in the development of our already impressive suite of digital products at News International.”

News Corp expects to complete the split by the middle of next year, pending approval of the board and shareholders, as well as regulatory approvals, favourable rulings from certain tax jurisdictions on the tax-free nature of the transaction to the company and its stockholders, and certain other conditions. News Corp expects to make preliminary filings with the SEC on the separation shortly.

Bedi Ajay Singh, the former finance chief at MGM Studios, will become chief financial officer of News Corp. Paul Cheesbrough, News Corp’s chief technology officer and a former digital media chief at the BBC, will continue in his role for the publishing company.

“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.”