Capital Radio chief executive Richard Eyre is poised to take the
newly-created job of chief executive of ITV - one of the most powerful
jobs in the media industry.
An official announcement is expected later this week.
Marcus Plantin, the outgoing director of the ITV Network Centre, will
step down at the end of August.
His successor will preside over the biggest structural shake-up in ITV’s
history, in which the ITV Association and its central commissioning
body, the Network Centre, will be scrapped to make way for the creation
of ITV Limited.
The new chief executive, who will receive a salary of pounds 500,000,
will have overall responsibility for the performance of ITV.
It is generally accepted that the brand needs a clearly focused strategy
under an accountable chief executive. The appointment of a marketing
director, who will report to the new chief executive, is also imminent
and will be made once Eyre takes up his new role.
Under the present system, Plantin takes the lead role in scheduling for
the ITV Network, working with the ITV companies.
Many observers believe that as TV enters the digital era, the main
function of the top ITV job will be to manage decline.
The latest June BARB figures reveal that ITV’s share of viewing was
31.9% against the total BBC figure of 42.6%.
Two other strong contenders for the chief executive’s job were ITV’s
controller of network drama, Nick Elliott, and Carlton TV chief
executive Clive Jones, but both now appear to have been ruled out.
Before Eyre joined Capital in 1991 he was media director at Bartle Bogle
Hegarty for five years. His departure would be a major blow for Capital,
which recently bought Virgin Radio.
Earlier this year, Eyre was in the running to become chief executive at
Capital Radio and ITV declined to comment on the appointment. Eyre was