Stuart Prebble has been confirmed as ITV's new chief executive as
part of a centralisation of ITV assets that is expected to spark a
review of the broadcaster's creative and media accounts.
Prebble has been the chief executive of Carlton and Granada's digital
venture, ONdigital, which is to drop its brand name and ally itself more
closely with its owners by adopting the brand ITV Digital. Prebble will
now add ITV's free-to-air channels and ITV2 to his remit, as well as
overseeing the creation of ITV.com.
The pooling of free-to-air, pay TV and online is expected to result in
the appointment of a single creative and media agency to work across the
At present Carlton, Granada, the ITV Network and ONdigital all use
different agencies. BMP DDB and New PHD work on ONdigital's account,
while HHCL & Partners and Starcom Motive hold ITV's business. Carlton
has used TBWA/London and Carat. A source close to ITV said: 'Inevitably,
agency suppliers will be reviewed and it is likely that one creative
agency and one media agency will be appointed.'
With Prebble filling the position of ITV's chief executive, three
directors operating the three key ITV businesses will report into
David Liddiment continues as ITV's director of programmes, but will also
assume the title of ITV's director of channels with ITV Digital falling
into his remit. Rob Fyfe, Prebble's deputy at ONdigital, will be the
managing director of ITV Digital, and a managing director for ITV.com is
now being sought.
The sales team for ITV2 is likely to be integrated into ITV Digital,
while the various ITV and Carlton online sales operations will be
The alignment of ITV and ONdigital could see their digital pay-TV
services being advertised on ITV for the first time. The Independent
Television Commission, following lobbying by Granada and Carlton, is
launching a public consultation on whether the rules on media
cross-promotion should be relaxed.
ITV Digital is set to launch a new pay-TV sports channel in August,
combining live football with feature-led programming.